Email of the day
Comment of the Day

December 20 2011

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Email of the day

on the safest jurisdiction for a deposit account:
“I am writing for the first time after subscribing for a number of years and attending the London Chart Seminar in November this year which I enjoyed very much.

“I have what I am sure is a very basic question .

“As a holder of an AXA insurance bond based in the Isle of Man I wish to establish a cash deposit account either in USD or other currencies. With current market volatility and with some very bad press regarding the very safety of European bank deposits and some insurance companies( including some particularly negative articles about the state of AXA Insurance) I am interested in any comments you might care to make as to which European, UK ,Swiss or other banks you consider as the "bank leaders" in terms of ensuring the safety of one's cash deposits.

“Even a " flight to safety " with a cash deposit seems a difficult challenge at this time!

"With thanks for your great work over the past years and best wishes for the Holiday Season & New Year"

Eoin Treacy's view Thank you for your well wishes and please let us reciprocate. This is anything but a basic question because it gets right to the heart of the trouble currently facing the Eurozone. Will Eurozone countries really allow their banks to go bust. The ECB is doing everything in its power to provide banks with the liquidity they need so at present the bankruptcy scenario is less likely. However in a worst case scenario some banks appear better able to cope than others.

This is a weak sector generally so we are not now thinking about trading but default probability. I would suggest looking at banks with a strong international presence and / or do not have an overly large investment banking division. This would suggest they are less likely to be embroiled in CDS or other such derivatives in the event of an unruly disintegration. HSBC, Standard Chartered, Nordea, etc fall into this category.

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