Global Finance has named the World’s 50 Safest Commercial Banks for 2017 with Germany’s DZ Bank taking top spot, up one position from last year’s ranking.
For commercial banks to qualify for this ranking, they must not be majority owned by government or regional authorities.
New banks in the top 10 in 2017 are Switzerland’s Pictet & Cie and Rabobank from the Netherlands.
Banks were selected through an evaluation of long-term foreign currency ratings – from Moody’s, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch—and total assets of the 500 largest banks worldwide.
Three of Singapore’s leading banks make the top 10 again in 2017, each moving up one position over last year, with DBS Bank in second place, OCBC Bank fourth and United Overseas Bank fifth.
The biggest jump up the list this year was made by ING from the Netherlands, with a 12 position move to 38.
In addition to the World’s 50 Safest Commercial Banks, the full report, which is due out in November, also includes the Safest Banks In Africa 2017 where South African banks dominate the list, taking the top six positions, led by Standard Bank, Africa’s largest bank by assets.
Last week ratings agency Moody’s maintained its negative outlook on South Africa’s banking system, stating that the lenders are likely to face more pressure over the next 12 to 18 months.
“Our negative outlook for South Africa’s banking system is mainly due to the weak operating conditions, which will challenge banks’ loan quality and profitability,” said Nondas Nicolaides, Moody’s vice president.
“Low economic growth will weaken banks’ loan quality and profitability.”
“Countries around the world, for the past several years, have been tightening regulation in an attempt to forestall another financial crisis,” said Joseph Giarraputo, publisher and editorial director of Global Finance.
“Both government-backed banks, dominant in many parts of the world, and private commercial banks are attempting to respond to the demand of corporate treasurers and other international clients, to provide those clients with financial services they can trust.”
He said that Africa can be a difficult place to do business, “so corporates need solid support from reliable financial partners. Our ratings provide valuable insight for global companies seeking to gain a toehold, or to build their strengths, in this region”.
Safest Banks in Africa 2017