The Bank of Cyprus in 2011 was one of the highest-rated banks in the world. This year, it had to be bailed out by the taxpayers of the European Union, who had no say in the matter. Otherwise, it would have gone bankrupt. Yet in 2011, it was the biggest bank in Cyprus. What could go wrong?
This: the bank bought lots of Greek government bonds in 2010 — just before the collapse of Greek bonds. In short, its senior bankers did not see the Greek crisis coming. Nobody did.
The two men responsible for this were fired. We would know more about this, except that emails relating to this purchase have mysteriously disappeared from the bank’s computers. The records were wiped clean. They are saying nothing about the missing files.
By 2011, the whole world knew that Greek bonds were the worst bonds any bank could own. Yet in that year, the magazine Global Finance gave the Bank of Cyprus an award as a well-run bank. This was posted in English on the bank’s website. It is still there, for all to see.
The prestigious Global Finance financial magazine honours the Bank of Cyprus with the title of Best Bank in Cyprus.
According to the Global Finance financial magazine, the Bank of Cyprus is the Best Bank in Cyprus in the category of Developed Markets. This new international award for the Bank of Cyprus was obtained during the annual World’s Best Banks Awards 2011, organised by the internationally acclaimed financial magazine. The winners of this year’s Awards were banks which succeeded in responding to the needs of their clients, achieving strong results and laying the foundations for future success.
The best banking organisations in 25 countries were selected by the editorial team of Global Finance, in cooperation with a team of bankers, financial analysts and other executives from the international financial sector. A number of objective criteria were examined in an international perspective, such as growth rate of assets, profitability, geographical expansion, creation of strategic relations, new business activities as well as the planning and provision of innovative banking products and services. The assessments of banking and investment consultants and analysts as well as key players from the broader banking industry were also taken into consideration in making the final decision.
Having satisfied fully the above criteria, the Bank of Cyprus was awarded in the category of Developed Markets of the World’s Best Banks Awards as the best bank in the Cyprus market, achieving yet another international recognition.
A year later, Global Finance repeated this by giving the Bank of Cyprus another award for excellence.
This week, it released its list of the best investment banks in the world. Why would anyone care? Why, because Global Finance is “internationally acclaimed.” How do I know this? Because I read it on the website of Global Finance. It’s here. “The internationally acclaimed Global Finance financial magazine has been in circulation for 24 years and has thousands of readers in a total of 163 countries.” We also read this: “Each year Global Finance selects the best financial institutions around the world. These awards have become a recognized and trusted standard of excellence.”
The world banking community is incestuous. It is up to its eyeballs in government IOUs. The supposed experts think this is a sign of bank safety. They assure depositors that everything is just fine.
Yet in 2011, Cypriot banks were praised as among the best in the world.
The depositors were assured that their deposits are safe. Then, over the weekend, a secret deal that had been negotiated weeks before by the newly elected president of Cyprus was announced: the theft of all bank deposits. Only the parliament of Cyprus got this changed: the theft of about half of all large deposits.
Lesson: there is never any warning. There are lies. There are secret deals. There are assurances. But there is never any warning.
The public believes before the crisis. The public believes that the next bailout will be the last. The public sits there, inert.
This will not change . . . not anywhere. The sheep trust their shepherds. Their shepherds are fools and liars.
For a list of awards given to the Bank of Cyprus, click the link.