Bank Run Watch: Bank Of East Asia Customers WIthdraw Deposits

Uh-oh. Another bank with depositors lined up to withdraw their money. Today’s bank run is taking place outside the doors of headquarters and branches of the Bank of East Asia, according to the New York Times.  

Late last week, Standard & Poor’s slashed the credit outlook for six Asian banks and six Asian insurers. It shouldn’t necessarily be a reason for panic—the outlook ratings went from positive to stable. But the collapse of Lehman Brothers has left nerves frayed and banks vulnerable to rumours

The Bank of East Asia is Hong Kong’s third-largest, with $51 billion in assets. The New York Times reports that the bank is blaming “malicious rumours” spread over “electronic messages.” (Probably text messages, since this is Hong Kong.) The police are investigating. From The NYT:

Depositors who lined up outside the company’s headquarters in the city centre said that after the failure of Lehman Brothers, they no longer fully trusted any financial institution. “If a business as big as Lehman can go down, then we’re scared,” said Ann Chan, an off-duty nurse, whose husband had called her Wednesday afternoon and sent her to wait in line to withdraw their money.


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