3 Malaysian banks merge to create Southeast Asia's fourth-largest bank

Three Malaysian banks have announced plans for a merger to create Southeast Asia's fourth-biggest commercial lender and an Islamic bank.

CIMB Group Holdings Berhad, RHB Capital Berhad and Malaysia Building Society Berhad said Thursday they have submitted the proposed merger to the country's central bank.

If approved, the combined entity would pass Malayan Banking Berhad as the country's biggest commercial bank.

The banks said in a joint statement that they hope to sign an agreement by early 2015 and complete the deal by mid-year.