April 09, 2014

Because of regulatory subsidies, banks are taking over what remains of safe havens, leaving other in the arms of risk.

Sir, John Plender writes about an “extraordinary demand for unsafe assets”, “Time is running out for the central bank riggers”, April 9.

It is not that it explains it all but, besides the quantitative easing that Plender mentions, much is caused by the fact that banks have been subsidized, by means of extraordinarily low capital requirements, to populate (overpopulate - dangerously) the ever scarcer safe havens.

Where pension funds and small time investors in need of maximum security used to go, that’s where the banks are today. What are now us normal risk avoiders to do? How can you compete with banks for a real positive rate, in what seems safe, if banks are allowed to leverage 20-30 times when going there?