Opinion: A few points of attention about Deutsche Bank’s latest promotion in Belgium

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When Deutsche Bank communicated their Belgian promotional offer of a fixed-term DB Invest Plus savings account that guarantees 5% interest (on a yearly basis) in 3 months, I was almost in. This was a promotion (valid until June 24th) I was going to take advantage of, be proud and blog about the fact that I had gotten 5% in a climate of negative interest rates. How good was I? But that climate kept echoing in the back of my mind. Why would a bank offer such a big premium over what the market is offering, when they can borrow money from the ECB at dirt-cheap rates? Who cares though, all deposits have a state-backed guarantee up to € 100,000, right? Well, yes, but the description of the risk involved contains something rather strange. It specifically mentions that in case of bankruptcy, the investor is at risk of losing his deposited funds. The amount that supersedes the government-backed € 100,000, might be converted into shares or be lost altogether. While this is part of the German system of double deposit guarantees, this disclaimer is particularly peculiar, as this promotional opportunity is capped at € 50,000, well below the government guarantee. A short-term promotion, valid for a very limited amount of time, well above other much cheaper options at their disposal, and explicitly mentioning that the investor might lose his funds even though the maximum amount is well below guaranteed deposits? I would almost think that Deutsche Bank is experiencing liquidity problems.

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