As of March 2023, MUFG Bank was the leading city bank in Japan, with total assets amounting to close to 313.9 trillion Japanese yen. Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation followed with total assets of around 252.6 trillion yen.
Commercial banks in Japan are regulated under the banking act and supervised by the Financial Services Agency (FSA), Japan’s primary financial regulator. There are a large number of banks in Japan, including five city banks and over 100 different regional banks.
City banks, which include the three megabanks, MUFG Bank, Sumitomo Banking Corporation, and Mizuho Bank, are among the largest banks in Japan and operate nationwide through a network of branches in major cities. They offer a wide range of financial services domestically and globally and do business with major corporations in Japan.
Unlike city banks, which belong to the largest banks in the world, Japanese regional banks focus on the domestic market. Regional banks are smaller than city banks and usually operate in the region where they are headquartered. They offer financial services to local individual customers and small and mid-sized enterprises. For historical reasons, regional banks are divided into regional banks I and II. Both types of banks fulfill the same functions, but are members of different associations. This is because most regional banks II are former mutual banks that have become ordinary commercial banks.