China’s ICBC buys Fortis US broker

City A.M. Reporter
INDUSTRIAL & Commercial Bank of China, the world’s biggest lender by market value, paid a token $1 for a small US brokerage firm, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Beijing-based ICBC is buying the prime dealer services unit of Fortis Securities from BNP Paribas, allowing France’s biggest-listed bank to dispose of the last remaining business unit of Fortis Securities for little or no cost, the journal said.

BNP Paribas took control of the Belgian-Dutch financial group Fortis when it was stripped down to a pure insurer after the financial crisis in 2008 and renamed Ageas.