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Agricultural Bank of China: Big Four Bank

July 6, 2015

The Agricultural Bank of China (ABC) is headquartered in Dongcheng District, Beijing, China. It is one of the “Big Four” banks in the People’s Republic of China. This bank has a somewhat unique history as it has been formed and then abolished a number of times.

Two banks owned by the government, Farmers Bank of China and Cooperation bank merged in 1951 to become the Agricultural Cooperation Bank, which ABC counts as the bank it start out as, but in 1952 the bank was merged with the People’s Bank of China, the central bank. In 1955, the first bank bearing the name Agricultural Bank of China was founded, but it too, merged with the central bank in 1957. Then the Chinese government initiated yet again the forming of another agricultural bank, which met the same fate as the predecessors, merging with the central bank two years later.

The current Agricultural Bank of China was established in February 1979. More sophisticated management went into play as it was restructured to form a holding company called, Agricultural Bank of China Limited. In July 2010, it was listed on the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges. ABC has branches across mainland China, Hong Kong, London, Tokyo, New York, Frankfurt, Sydney, Seoul, and Singapore.

With 320 million retail customers, 2.7 million corporate clients, and almost 24,000 branches it has every right to be one of the “Big Four”. ABC provides corporate and retail banking products and services locally and internationally. It operates through Corporate Banking, Personal Banking, Treasury Operations, and Other segments.

The firm’s deposit products include demand, call, foreign currency time, foreign currency call, time or demand optional, foreign exchange demand, foreign exchange call, negotiated, agreed-term, and foreign exchange time deposits. ABC also offers loans comprising housing, consumer, business, fixed asset, working capital, real estate, entrusted syndicated, and small enterprise loans, as well as trade finances, guarantees and commitments and a host of other products and services.

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