iLocal News Archives

CEO guards against increasing bank fees

Banking-CustomBy Dave George From Antigua Observer

Much debate has been raged in recent times concerning increasing bank fees, but the chief executive officer of CIBC First Caribbean International Bank is cautious about his financial institution doing the same.

On Thursday, Gary Brown told OBSERVER media that while his bank is in the business of making money, it must be careful that it does not impose additional charges on customers.

“We’re a bank … our objective is to make money, but we very much weigh the impact of our interests and fee structure on our constituents.

“We believe that our fee structure is competitive. You haven’t seen FirstCaribbean take such actions to increase bank fees, but at the same time we need to run our business in such a way, so that we can receive a return on our capital,” Brown said.

He highlighted one of the main problems that most banks, especially in the Caribbean, are faced with that could be attributed to their increasing their bank fees.

“One of the problems that exist across the Caribbean is that there is a lot of excess liquidity, meaning there are a lot of deposits placed in strong banks like FirstCaribbean. You must possess the ability to put those deposits to work. You have to be able to provide loans and generate an income as opposed to having those amounts of money sitting in a Central Bank not earning anything.

“One of the challenges that we all face is the various economic conditions in the region. We need to find ways to deploy that capital to put it to work, and so that’s the biggest challenge and it’s the root of a lot of the steps that banks have taken in that they have to find a way to make up the lost income for those deposits that are being brought in that can’t be put to work,” he added.

The issue of increased bank fees has been a major concern for customers of the Royal Bank of Canada in particular, which imposed a $25 monthly fee on personal savings and other personal bank accounts in June this year.

In the wake of the fee increase, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) had expressed concern about commercial banks’ fees and charges across the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) and the effects on depositors.

The Central Bank, however, noted it has no power to regulate the fees and charges of commercial banks.

However, it mentioned the issue had been discussed by the Monetary Council which is the highest decision-making body of the ECCB.

Photo taken from:

For more on this story go to:


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *