Linkages of Financial Groups in the European Union: Financial Conglomeration Developments in the Old and New Member States

By Ingrid Ulst | Go to book overview

Chapter 2
Financial Conglomerates in the
European Union

2.1. Banking in the European Union: Importance and Insurance
Linkages of Largest Banks

The following part of the survey covers the banking sector in EU countries looking at the largest banks/banking groups defined according to their total assets. The five largest banks in each country are ranked according to their total assets; the statistics have been compiled based on annual figures as of the year ending in 2001. The data for individual banks/banking groups are presented on a consolidated basis, unless a bank is a stand-alone entity. Thus, systematic consistency is achieved by using similar basis of ranking for all banks/banking groups. I have included both banks and banking groups in this survey as most of the largest banking groups in the EU comprise of the largest banks and are also treated in official country rankings accordingly.

The largest banks/banking groups are presented in Table 1. The banks and banking groups in this survey are defined in the meaning of ordinary banking business. The ranking includes all banks, except those that are special purpose banks (e.g., public finance or project finance only) and whose activities do not include any universal banking activities. In different countries, the banking systems differ widely. I have examined commercial banks, local savings banks, co-operative banks, mortgage banks and other credit institutions engaged in universal banking business. Table 1 suggests that no banking structure prevails in top ranking. In some countries (e.g., Germany, the United Kingdom, Belgium and Luxembourg) the largest banks are mainly commercial banks, while in other

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Linkages of Financial Groups in the European Union: Financial Conglomeration Developments in the Old and New Member States
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Table of Contents v
  • List of Tables vii
  • List of Graphs viii
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Financial Conglomeration- Economic and Legal Aspects 6
  • Chapter 2 - Financial Conglomerates in the European Union 40
  • Chapter 3 - Financial Conglomerates of the European Union in the New Member States 68
  • Conclusion 116
  • Abbreviations 121
  • References 122
  • Sources of Research Data 126
  • Index 130
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