Singapore’s Deposit Surge Signals Safe-Haven Status

Bank deposits are flooding into Singapore, an indication of the city-state’s rising status as a safe haven for global, especially European, investors. Foreign currency deposits held in Singapore banks increased by 43 percent year-onyear in March compared with singledigit growth only eight months before and a slight contraction one year earlier, according to Monetary Authority of Singapore data.

In sharp contrast, growth in euro-denominated deposits held by euro-zone banks has steadily slowed since the European debt crisis erupted in May 2010. Growth in euro-zone overnight deposits by households and nonfinancial corporations fell to 0.3 percent per annum in March this year compared with 12 percent in April 2010 and average growth of 7.3 percent since January 2004, according to ECB data. Even in Germany, one of the euro area’s healthiest members, deposit growth has failed to keep pace with the 10-year average.

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