The Spanish banking system is well established and modernized. The country hosts tens of banks and Microfinance institutions, mainly operating in provincial capitals. Each bank has its own traditions and professional ethics that drive performance. Spanish citizens have the freedom to choose their preferred bank and the results are evident in the number of customers serviced by any given bank. A survey was conducted to establish the top 10, most popular Spanish banks. The survey focused on the volume of assets and deposits, number of branches and the number of employees.


  1. Banco Santander

The lender, headquartered in Madrid is the most popular bank in Spain.  Founded in 1857, the bank has its managed funds totaling €1.52 trillion, over 12000 branches and 190,000 employees at the close of May 2016. Its large capital outlay and market capitalization suggests  overwhelming popularity among Spanish citizens.


This bank, headquartered in Bilbao, Spain, has total assets worth over €750 billion and 137,968 employees, as of December 2015. The bank has over the years acquired smaller Spanish lenders in order to boost sales. For instance, it acquired Simple, a direct bank for €117 million, late in 2014. Its popularity took a huge boost in September 13, 2013, by becoming an official sponsor of the NBA, the American basketball franchise. For this reason, the bank is particularly popular among the youth.

3.Caixa bank

The Spanish lender is the third-largest by market value, evidenced by an extensive branch network of 6,631 branches serving a whooping 13.2 million customers. It employs a total of 31,948 employees, serving in different business departments, mainly retail banking, private banking and insurance. The company has its headquarters in Barcelona.

  1. Banco popular Espanol

Founded in 1926, the bank has achieved remarkable growth over the years and as at the end of 2014,it had 15,321 employees on its payroll. Total assets as of December 2015 stood at €218 billion. The bank consists of five regional banks and a mortgage bank.


  1. Bankia

Founded in December 2010, the lender is the 6th most popular bank, with total assets worth €206.970 billion in 2015. The bank employs 13,569 employees and serves about 12 million Spanish clients. It has a structured business model that concentrates operations on six key areas namely, private banking, retail banking, business banking, asset management, bancassurance and capital markets.

  1. Banco Sabadell

It forms the sixth largest and most popular banking group in Spain. Its market capitalization stood at €6.5 billion as of June 2016. It has a network of 2204 branches in Spain and 11.4 million customers. Its headquartered in Sabadell, Spain , and specializes in funding small and medium enterprises.

  1. Banco Pastor

Founded in 1776, this is the oldest Spanish bank that has a network of 555 branches in Spain, employing around 4000 employees. It specializes in commercial banking, internet banking and treasury and capital markets. It was one of the banks that failed the European stress test in 2011 after which it was taken over by Banco popular, though it continues to transact business as a separate entity.

  1. CatalunyaCaixa

It’s one of the largest savings bank in Spain with over €81 billion worth of assets. It employs around 8000 workers spread out across 1,212 branches serving over 4 million customers.


  1. Caja de Ahorros del mediterraneo

It‘s the first savings Spanish bank to issue public shares. The company serves over 3.5 million clients through its 1200 branches.

  1. Novacaixagalicia

It was established in 2010 after the merger of Caixa  Galicia and Caixa de  ahorros de vigo. It has a network of over 1000 branches and 8000 staffore than 3 million customers.

The above ranking serves as a guide to the most popular banks in Spain, and could be used by clients when deciding where to save or seek services.

This blog explores Spain’s economy and banking system. It describes popular Spanish banks, their current details and their history, current market climates in Spain, and offers guides to banking in Spain. This blog was written to assist users and customers in navigating the Spanish banking system

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