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IPFS News Link • Central Banks/Banking

What Will Happen When Banks Go Bust? Bank Runs, Bail-Ins and Systemic Risk

• https://www.globalresearch.ca, By Ellen Brown

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 states in its preamble that it will "protect the American taxpayer by ending bailouts." But it does this under Title II by imposing the losses of insolvent financial companies on their common and preferred stockholders, debtholders, and other unsecured creditors, through an "orderly resolution" plan known as a "bail-in."

The point of an orderly resolution under the Act is not to make depositors and other creditors whole. It is to prevent a systemwide disorderly resolution of the sort that followed the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy in 2008. Under the old liquidation rules, an insolvent bank was actually "liquidated"—its assets were sold off to repay depositors and creditors.

In an "orderly resolution," the accounts of depositors and other creditors are emptied to keep the insolvent bank in business. And even if you are getting only a few cents a month on your deposits, you are a creditor of the bank.  As explained in a December 2016 article in the University of Chicago Law Review titled "Safe Banking: Finance and Democracy:"

A general deposit is a loan made to a bank. This means that the bank is the general depositor's debtor, but that the bank has legal title to the funds deposited; these funds may be commingled with the bank's other funds. All the general depositor has is a general, unsecured claim against the bank …. [T]he bank is free to use the deposit as it sees fit. [Emphasis added.]


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