The banking system in Ghana is well structured in the bid to meet the need of their economy, especially at the local level due to the losses they suffered locally during the late 1980’s. The Ghanaian government in 1989 came up with a reform in other to resuscitate the banking sector. The laws that were made required the banks to maintain a certain minimum capital base and also introduced limits to single borrowers and the risks associated with it. In the early 1990s, the banking system (banks in Ghana) was upgraded, it includes the central bank (the Bank of Ghana), three large commercial banks (Ghana Commercial Bank, Barclays Bank of Ghana (now known as Absa Bank Ghana Limited), Standard Chartered Bank of Ghana), and seven secondary banks.
Even though banks in Ghana offer some of the highest lending rates in West Africa, they also enjoyed increased business in the early 1990’s because of high deposit rates. The Bank of Ghana which is the central bank of Ghana raised its rediscount rate in stages to around 35 percent by mid-1991, driving money market and commercial bank interest rates well above the rate of inflation, hence, making real interest rates substantially positive. As inflation decelerated over the year, the rediscount rate was lowered in stages to 20 percent, bringing lending rates down accordingly.
Here is a comprehensive list of Banks in Ghana including merchant banks and Agricultural banks
1. Absa Bank Ghana Limited – Formerly known as Barclays Bank of Ghana Limited, this bank is a commercial bank in Ghana, licensed by the Bank of Ghana, the country’s central bank and national banking regulator. It was established in 1971 and is a subsidiary ofBarclays Bank of Ghana Ltd., Asset Management Arm. It has its headquarters in Absa House, J.E. Atta-Mills High Street, Accra, Ghana.
2. Access Bank (Ghana) Plc is a member of Access Bank Group, a large financial services provider headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria. Access Bank Group operates in West Africa, Central Africa, and East Africa.
3. Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) Plc – A state-owned development and commercial bank in Ghana. The Government owns 52% of the shareholdings. ADB was established in 1965 and is headquartered in Accra. At December 2011, it had total assets of approximately $684 million.
4. Bank of Africa Ghana Limited – A commercial bank in Ghana offering a wide array of banking products and services including retail, corporate and SME banking. Bank of Africa started operations in Ghana in 2011 after Bank of Africa Group acquired a majority interest in Amalgamated Bank. BOA Group’s majority shareholder is Bank Maroccaine du Commerce Exterieur (BMCE Bank).
5. CalBank PLC– A commercial bank in Ghana established in July 1990 and is considered to be one of the most innovative banks in Ghana. As of March 31, 2012, it had total assets of GHS 843.705 million and customer deposits of GHS 558.840 million.
6. Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited – Founded on August 1, 2018, this bank is a licensed commercial bank in Ghana. Its headquartersis licated in Accra, Ghana.
7. Ecobank Ghana Plc – provides retail, corporate and investment banking services. The Bank employs about 900 people and operates 53 branches across the country. As of December 31, 2011, Ecobank Ghana had total assets of GHS 2.132 billion, customer deposits of over 1.608 billion and loans and advances to customers of 849.893 million.
8. FBNBank (Ghana) Limited – Previously known as International Commercial Bank (ICB), FBNBank Ghana is a subsidiary of First Bank of Nigeria Limited. It commenced operations in Ghana in November 1996 as ICB.
9. Fidelity Bank Ghana Limited – One of the 27 licensed commercial banks in the country. The Bank was established in 2006 and is owned by Ghanaian and Foreign investors including ADB and SSNIT. At December 2011, Fidelity had total assets of GHS 1.031 billion.
10. First Atlantic Bank Limited – A commercial bank in Ghana. It was established on May 4, 1994, and is headquartered in Accra, Ghana.
11. First National Bank (Ghana) Limited – Commonly referred to as First National Bank Ghana, this bank was established in 2015 and is a Bank of Ghana-licensed commercial bank in Ghana. It’s headquarters is in Accra, Ghana.
12. Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) – The largest indigenous financial institution in the country. As of December 2011, it had total assets of over GHS 2.463 billion, customer deposits of GHS 2.061 billion and shareholders’ equity of GHS 178.240 million. The Bank has the largest banking network in Ghana with about 160 branches and over 205 ATMs.
13. Guaranty Trust Bank (Ghana) Limited – A subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, one of the foremost banks in Nigeria with a Triple-A rating.
14. National Investment Bank (NIB) – A universal bank focusing on development and commercial banking activities. As of December 31, 2011, NIB had total assets of GHS 879 million and operated 27 branches nationwide.
15. OmniBSIC Bank Ghana Limited – This bank was created by the merger of the erstwhile Omni Bank Ghana Limited and BSIC Ghana Bank Limited. It is a commercial bank in Ghana that is licensed by the central bank and national banking regulator, the Bank of Ghana.
16. Prudential Bank– A commercial bank in Ghana established in 1993. As of July 2012, it had 29 Branches and 2 Agencies located in the Accra/Tema metropolis, Kumasi, Takoradi, Cape Coast and Tamale.
17. Republic Bank (Ghana) PLC – This is one of the licensed commercial banks in Ghana. It was founded on May 7, 1990, and is headquartered in Accra, Ghana.
18. Societe General Ghana Plc – Formerly known as Société Générale – Social Security Bank, this bank is part of the Société Générale banking group. It was founded in 1975, it’s based in Accra, Ghana, and its stock is listed on the Ghana Stock Exchange. It is a component of the GSE All-Share Index.
19. Stanbic Bank Ghana Limited – The sixth largest bank in terms of total assets. It has 23 branches in 9 out of the 10 regions in Ghana. The company is a member of the Standard Bank Group, based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
20. Standard Chartered Bank Ghana Plc – One of the oldest financial institutions in the country. It has been operating in Ghana since 1896. The Bank is a subsidiary of Standard Chartered PLC, based in London, United Kingdom.
21. United Bank for Africa (Ghana) Limited – A subsidiary of United Bank for Africa Plc, which is based in Lagos, Nigeria.
22. Universal Merchant Bank (formerly Merchant Bank Ghana (MBG) Limited– A universal bank in Ghana with 22 branches nationwide. As of December 2010, Merchant Bank had total assets of GHS 806.548 million.
23. Zenith Bank (Ghana) Limited – A privately owned African bank established in 2005. It operates as a subsidiary of Zenith Bank Plc, one of the largest banks in Nigeria. As of December 31, 2011, Zenith Bank Ghana had total assets of approximately GHS 700 million and customer deposits of about GHS 577 million.
23. Bank of Ghana (BOG) – The central bank of Ghana established on the 4th March 1957.