“Things have gotten so bad in the world of finance that banks are now charging some clients a fee to hold their money. The banks say that it is too expensive to warehouse large “hot-money” deposits—funds thought likely to flee in hard times—given low interest rates and new, postcrisis regulations that make it more costly for them to hold certain kinds of cash…

…Haughtily turning the cold shoulder to cash-rich investors, both J.P. Morgan Chase and State Street Corp. now impose fees on some customers seeking to deposit large amounts of money. The message is clear: If you’ve got billions and billions of dollars lying around in your vaults and you don’t know what to do with them, don’t bother coming to us. If you do come to us, we’re going to charge you an onerous storage fee. We don’t want your money. We don’t like your money. We don’t need your money. We’ve got enough of our own.”, Joe Queenan, “My Brilliant Future in High Finance”, The Wall Street Journal, October 25, 2015

Moving Targets: Joe Queenan

My Brilliant Future in High Finance

Things have gotten so bad in the world of finance that banks are now charging some clients a fee to hold their money. The banks say that it is too expensive to warehouse large “hot-money” deposits—funds thought likely to flee in hard times—given low interest rates and new, postcrisis regulations that make it more costly for them to hold certain kinds of cash.

Haughtily turning the cold shoulder to cash-rich investors, both J.P. Morgan Chase and State Street Corp. now impose fees on some customers seeking to deposit large amounts of money. The message is clear: If you’ve got billions and billions of dollars lying around in your vaults and you don’t know what to do with them, don’t bother coming to us. If you do come to us, we’re going to charge you an onerous storage fee. We don’t want your money. We don’t like your money. We don’t need your money. We’ve got enough of our own.

This is where low-profile, grass-roots financiers like me come in. Unlike snooty banks that cavalierly give the brushoff to previously respected customers, I’m more than happy to take all that money off financial institutions’ hands and warehouse their cash.

They can put some of it in my savings account, where it will earn a piddling amount of interest, or they can deposit it directly into my checking account, where it will earn nothing. But that’s OK with me, because having a few hundred billion dollars floating around in my checking account means that I never have to worry about accidentally exceeding my debit-card limit or letting my monthly balance drop below the minimum $2,500 needed to guarantee free checking.

I honestly don’t care how large the deposit is. Nor do I care where the money comes from. If you’re a gigantic financial institution and you can’t find anywhere to hide your cash, park it with me. No problem whatsoever. I’m here for you.

Nor do I intend to hose my customers the way the big boys do. As opposed to J.P. Morgan Chase and State Street, I will not charge my clients a nickel to park their money with me. Maybe they can drop off a few tickets to “The Lion King” or a Knicks-Wizards game every once in a while as a nice gesture, or send me coupons to the Olive Garden or Applebee’s, but other than that, I expect nothing in return.

The fact is, I’m perfectly willing to split the 0.75% interest I get on the money stored in my savings account. While it is true that the interest rates banks now offer ordinary customers are puny and even insulting, a 0.75% return on, say, $8 trillion is nothing to turn up your nose at. If I could get a 0.75% return, or even just half of that, on a few trillion dollars, even for just a day, I could finally afford to get the house painted.

Experts will scoff at this proposal. They will say: How is a clown like you, with no background in high finance and no banking experience, going to handle all the paperwork? No problem. My wife is a chartered accountant, the English equivalent of a CPA. She’s really good with numbers. Really good. She already handles all our banking issues, so adding a tiny amount of extra paperwork every month or so isn’t going to kill her. Anyway, we have Microsoft Excel.

So send me your money. Send it to me now. Drop me an email, and I’ll get you the routing number ASAP. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Posted on October 26, 2015, in Postings. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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