WASHINGTON, Oct. 31 (Xinhua)-- The U.S. Federal Reserve on Wednesday announced its approval of the purchase of up to 9.9 percent of the voting shares of the Bank of East Asia Ltd based in Hong Kong by Japan's Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group,Inc.(SMFG) and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. (SMBC).
The Fed said in a statement that the Bank of East Asia is a bank holding company under the U.S. Bank Holding Company Act by virtue of its ownership of the Bank of East Asia (U.S.A) National Association (BEA-USA) which is located in New York city.
SMFG, with total assets of approximately 1.7 trillion dollars, is the third largest organization in Japan. Through its subsidiaries including SMBC, SMFG engages in a broad range of banking and financial services throughout Japan, Asia, the United Kingdom, and North and South America, according to the Fed.
The Bank of East Asia, with total consolidated assets of approximately 82.6 billion dollars, is the third largest bank in Hong Kong. It controls BEA-USA which has total assets of approximately 720 million dollars and operates 13 branches in New York and California.