A batch of Chinese privately owned banks that reformers hoped would direct loans to credit-starved consumers and small businesses have yet to achieve significant scale, denting hopes that they will transform the state-dominated banking system. China’s banking regulator has revealed data on a group of five privately owned banks that Beijing approved in 2014 as part of a closely watched pilot program, the Financial Times reports. The group includes WeBank, backed by Tencent Holdings, and MYBank, controlled by Ant Financial, Alibaba’s financial arm. As a group, the banks had total assets of RMB 133bn ($19bn) by the end of September and profits of RMB 572m in the first three quarters of 2016. That compares with RMB 217tn in banking assets for Chinese banks overall. If the group was a single institution, it would rank 18th among Chinese lenders by assets.
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