There’s a headline to grab attention. It’s been reported that several Chinese and other non-domestic and non-traditional lenders are rushing across the American landscape looking for deals. Take a look at the WSJ article of June 2 about the International & Commercial Bank of China’s recent loan to GE. ICBC has over a trillion dollars of assets, it’s reported to be the most profitable bank in the world and it’s ready to lend. Maybe this is just a “no duh” moment, but what a terrific business strategy for any lender not damaged by the late unpleasantness (a Southern expression still in use about the Civil War but appropriate here)! If the gnomes of Basal get their way and require US and European banks to put up massive capital over the next couple of years, strong, unimpaired semi-sovereign banks may be the best ticket in town.

We need to put on our best Sunday come-to-meeting clothes, bring over a hot casserole and welcome these new and undamaged players to the neighborhood!  In addition to ICBC, think Bank of Communications, Bank of China, China Construction Bank and China Merchant Bank, all of who already have US offices. And don’t forget all those other non-domestic banks and life companies who missed the subprime lending party and could easily find US domestic investment very attractive. Just for starters, here’s the contact information of the five mentioned above:

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China
725 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10022
(212) 223-4367

Bank of Communications
One Exchange Plaza
New York, NY 10006
(212) 943-4750‎

Bank of China
410 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10017
(212) 935-3101
42 East Broadway
New York, NY 10002
(212) 925-2355; (212) 925-2763; (212) 925-2805

China Construction Bank
1095 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
(212) 207-8188‎

China Merchants Bank
535 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10022
(212) 688-6606