SNL Financial ranks Europe’s 50 largest banks

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Deutsche Bank AG knocked off top position by HSBC Holdings Plc

SNL Financial has released its annual ranking of the top 50 European banks by total assets. Amid much focus on the deleveraging underway across Europe's banking sector, this annual look at the region's biggest banks sheds light on who has moved up and who has moved down over the past 12 months. As SNL Financial’s pro forma 2012 analysis shows, however, the effects of the deleveraging are subtle at best among Europe's big players. The analysis, in fact, shows three banks posting more than €2 trillion in total assets, compared to one such bank in the 2011 ranking.

HSBC Holdings Plc climbed two notches in the new ranking, which includes recent and pending European acquisitions, to become the largest bank in Europe. The bank had €2.041 trillion in total assets as of May 17. Meanwhile, in the course of 12 months, Deutsche Bank AG slipped one notch from first place with €2.022 trillion in assets and Crédit Agricole Group, moved up one notch to third place, with total assets of approximately €2.008 trillion.

Among the banks that also appeared in the previous ranking, five showed year-over-year double-digit declines in assets in the latest analysis. Hypo Real Estate Holding AG shrank 28.6%, ING Bank NV 13%, KBC Group NV 11.7%, Credit Suisse Group AG 11.3% and UBS AG 10.6%.

In contrast, OAO Sberbank of Russia climbed nine notches in the ranking, recording year-over-year asset growth of 44%, thanks in large part to favorable market conditions at home and acquisitions abroad.

One bank that would have made SNL Financial’s list is National Bank of Greece SA. The bank's acquisition of Eurobank Ergasias SA would have added €71.3 billion in assets, but the deal hit a speed bump when Greek regulators suspended the process to allow the banks to recapitalize separately.

National Bank of Greece responded in April with plans to issue €1.9 billion through contingent convertible bonds and a rights offering to raise €9.75 billion. A few weeks later, in May, the bank also snapped up the healthy assets and liabilities of First Business Bank AE, resulting in €1.5 billion in assets.

Consolidation was a big theme in many countries, particularly Spain, which has continued its deal making into 2013.

A case in point: La Caixa's acquisition of Banco de Valencia SA, which added €21.5 billion in assets. Then there was Banco Santander SA, which boosted its assets by close to €10.6 billion after acquiring Kredyt Bank SA from KBC Bank NV.

And more M&A appears to be on the way. Banco de Sabadell SA looks set to acquire Banco Gallego SA as well as the Spanish retail banking operations of Lloyds TSB Bank Plc. The two deals combined are expected to add nearly €6 billion in assets to Sabadell's balance sheet.

Click here to see SNL Financial’s 2013 European bank market capitalization ranking.

Click here to see SNL Financial’s previous ranking of Europe’s largest banks.

About SNL Financial
SNL Financial is a leading provider of financial information on more than 6,500 public companies and 50,000 private companies in business sectors critical to the global economy: Banking, Financial Services, Insurance, Real Estate, Energy, Metals & Mining, and Media & Communications. The SNL information service integrates breaking news, comprehensive data and expert analysis into an electronic database available online and updated around the clock.

For businesses and organizations interested in additional information or to receive a free trial of SNL’s European product, please email sales(at)snl(dot)com, or phone +44 (0)20 7398 0873 (Europe) or +1 (866)296-3743 (America).

For more details on SNL’s European coverage please visit: http://www.snleurope.com

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Christina Twomey
SNL Financial
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