UBS Beats Private Banks in Asia for Seventh Straight Year

New Delhi: UBS Group AG topped the list of 20 largest wealth firms in Asia for the seventh consecutive year as the combined assets under management jumped to nearly US$2 trillion in the region, Asian Private Banker (APB) said.

The bank retained its top spot by almost double margin, with assets totaling US$450 billion. UBS saw assets under management rise 26% year-on-year. Credit Suisse bagged the second spot with assets equal to US$227.3 billion, up 10.8%. HSBC Private Banking, Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management, and Julius Baer rounded up top five.

Top Private Banks in Asia

1. UBS 450 +26.1%
2. Credit Suisse 227.3 +10.8%
3. HSBC 151 +21.8%
4. Morgan Stanley 131 +24.8%
5. Julius Baer 130.2 +16.4%

All of the 20 largest private banks in Asia excluding China saw an increase in AUM, up 20.6% to US$1.96 trillion, indicating a healthy performance. APB said that Fixed income, cash management and structured products grabbed most attention, while real estate also attracted funds. “Cash level remained elevated for much of 2019, placing the onus on private banks to deliver relevant and compelling ideas to clients,” it added. International and Asia headquartered banks assets under management rose 21% and 19% respectively.

EFG Bank’s acquisition of Australian investment and wealth management firm, Shaw and Partners helped it gain 74%, the biggest rise of 2019. It was followed by CIMB Private Banking, which covers southeast Asia with a hefty increase of 55%.

The region’s relationship manager(RM) headcount increased moderately, up 4% year-on-year. HSBC and EFG were the only companies posting double digit growth among the top 10 by RM population. With HSBC posting 19% increase and EFG, 193%. UBS recorded a net decrease but still remains the largest employer with 1041. Average AUM per RM of the top 20 banks surged 17% year-on-year as asset growth outpaced headcount growth. Goldman Sachs retained the number one spot with US$923 million per RM followed by Pictet Wealth Management(US$675 million) and J.P Morgan(US$670 million).

Citigroup Inc. and DBS Group Holdings Ltd., were dropped from the list for second straight year as both banks include sub banking private divisions in their banking total. “A large portion of those assets may be from HNWIs and mass affluent platforms invariably share some products and services with the private bank,” APB said. “Thus, to maintain the purity of our data, we only consider private banking specific data and, where available, include minimum assets requirement.”


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