The clients of the banks that are based in Catalonia are worried about the effects of a declaration of independence in their credits and deposits.
What happens to the money I have in those banks?
It is the million dollar question and the reason why many customers of CaixaBank and Sabadell are closing accounts in figures that are not being detailed by these two entities. “The leakage of deposits is taking place, although not at alarming levels,” Javier Flores, analyst at Asinver, explained 20 minutes ago.
Are my funds safe?
It depends on whether the real independence of Catalonia is carried out or not. There are two cases. One, that of the accounts opened in Catalonia of any entity, not only Catalan: a corralito decreed with independence would affect all deposits even if they are from a bank that has its headquarters in another community. BBVA, among them, would be among the most vulnerable because after buying Unnim and Catalunya Banc, the entity chaired by Francisco González owns 30% of the branches there and 21% of its credit portfolio. The other scenario is the accounts opened in other regions: these, although they are from CaixaBank and Sabadell, would be safer.
And if there is independence?
That Puigdemont goes out on the balcony and declares independence unilaterally is useless if the international community does not recognize you as a State. But, what if I got this support? “Then the banks that had their headquarters in Catalonia would risk being nationalized”, warns Flores, which precisely circumscribes the change of address of Sabadell and CaixaBank to avoid a nationalization.
Would there be a playpen?
It is the fear of many citizens and the rumor spread these days on social networks. “The corralito will necessarily be produced if the independence is formalized”, explains this analyst. “But the panic and the flight of deposits towards Andorra, France and Spain would be in the whole banking, not only the Catalan”.
And what about my mortgage if another currency is created?
The formal independence and the birth of a “Catalan crown” is still land for the fiction economy. But if it occurred, according to Flores, “it would be a luck for the indebted” because the leakage of deposits from Catalonia would force a depreciation of the new currency to recover competitiveness … and that would facilitate the return of the loan signed in euros.
But those two banks have fallen a lot in the stock market …
That is another subject. A massive withdrawal of money in Catalan banks would affect the solvency of CaixaBank, Sabadell and even the Caja de Ingenieros, based in Caspe street in Barcelona. And we already know from Popular what happens if a bank loses liquidity in jets. “The Deposit Guarantee Fund protects up to 100,000 euros of clients’ money,” Flores recalls. But of course, it only protects the funds of banks in the European Union. If Catalonia leaves the club, the Catalan bank loses the umbrella. Hence the changes of venue. The association of banking users Adicae criticized yesterday however that the “precipitate flight” of Sabadell “generates alarm”.
So, do I calm down?
“Nowadays, any depositor can be at ease in a Catalan bank, Bankia or Santander”, says Flores. Yes, a peace of mind up to the mentioned 100,000 euros deposit limit … and whenever a bankruptcy does not catch the entity with its headquarters in Catalonia and outside the shelter of the Guarantee Fund and the EU.
Why CaixaBank and Sabadell went up on the stock market this Thursday?
Exact. Investors welcomed the fact that the Sabadell moved its headquarters to Alicante and in the last half hour of the session the titles skyrocketed from a growth of 3.16% to another of 6.16%. The possibility that CaixaBank imitates it increased its share by 4.93%.