Bank of China plans to issue up to $16 bln of preference shares

HONG KONG Tue May 13, 2014 6:51am EDT

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HONG KONG May 13 (Reuters) - Bank of China said it would issue up to 100 billion yuan ($16.03 billion) worth of preference shares, taking advantage of new rules announced this year aimed at helping Chinese companies bolster capital levels.

It is the second of China's big four lenders to confirm plans to issue preference shares, under new rules announced by the China Securities Regulatory Commission and the China Banking Regulatory Commission in April.

Agricultural Bank of China said on May 8 it would issue up to 80 billion yuan worth of preference shares .

Bank of China, the nation's fourth-largest lender by market value, made the announcement in a regulatory filing in Shanghai on Tuesday.

Chinese lenders need to raise funds to boost their capital adequacy ratios, a measure of how much capital banks hold in reserve against assets such as loans. ($1 = 6.2375 Chinese Yuan) (Reporting By Lawrence White; Editing by Erica Billingham)

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