Global Finance presents its 27th annual listing of the best banks globally, regionally and in more than 150 countries. This year’s winners are hoping their investment in new technology helps them weather the Covid-19 crisis.
When the novel coronavirus spread worldwide earlier this year, the global banking system was generally well capitalized and in good fundamental health. Financial institutions responded quickly and continued to provide services with minimal interruption. In many cases, banks went beyond what was required of them to extend payment deadlines and distribute financial aid on behalf of governments.
The editors of Global Finance, with input from industry analysts, corporate executives and technology experts, selected the winners for the World’s Best Banks 2020 using information provided by banks and other providers as well as independent research, based on a series of objective and subjective factors.
It isn’t necessary to enter in order to win, but experience shows that the additional information supplied in an entry can increase the chance of success. In many cases, entrants are able to present details that may not be readily available to the editors.
Judgments were based on performance over the period from January 1 to December 31, 2019, except for global winners, for whom developments in the first half of 2020 were also factored in. We apply a proprietary algorithm to shorten the list of contenders and arrive at a numerical score, with 100 signifying perfection. The algorithm weights a range of criteria for relative importance, including knowledge of local conditions and customer needs, financial strength and safety, strategic relationships and governance, competitive pricing, capital investment and innovation in products and services.
Once we narrow the field, our final criteria include scope of global coverage, size and experience of staff, customer service, risk management, range of products and services, execution skills and use of technology. In the case of a tie, our bias leans toward a local provider rather than a global institution. We also tend to favor private sector banks over government-owned institutions.
The winners are those banks and providers that best serve the specialized needs of corporations engaged in global business. We seek to honor not the biggest institutions but the best: those with qualities companies should look for when choosing a provider.
DBS Bank, which takes the top honor in Global Finance’s World’s Best Banks 2020 awards, was exemplary in this respect; it was ready for the sharp rise in demand for digital banking services during the pandemic. Over the past decade, the Singapore-based institution has invested heavily in all things digital and created an inclusive and efficient…