London
30 November 2016
Reporter: Drew Nicol

GCF: Depository banks need more grilling


Neither investors or counterparties are doing enough to challenge depository banks on their ability to weather so-called 'black swan' events, according to delegates at Global Custody Forum in London.

A French banking speaker, who recently began to focus on the Nordic region, expressed his surprise that regional Nordic players are not delving to sufficient depths in their due diligence of depositary banks they were considering working with.

An ex-rating agency speaker added that a number of depository banks do not have standalone ratings from a major ratings agency, saying this is another indicator that clients are not conducting thorough vetting processes.

Of the two depositary bank representatives in the hall, one declined to comment and another answered in the affirmative, saying banks are doing enough to prepare for any significant market event. However, the speaker did not respond to questions relating to a lack of due diligence.

Another banking audience member summarised the risk that such an omission might represent, saying: "You can build all the market buffers for your own asset protection you want, but if you can't trust the people you do business with to do the same, it's all useless."

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