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A Shock To The Global Economy

THE COLLAPSE OF SILICON VALLEY BANK (SVB)

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) took over SVB. It was the biggest banking collapse in America since Washington Mutual in 2008.


SIGNATURE BANK WAS SHUT DOWN BY FEDERAL REGULATORS: Because depositors panicked about SVB’s collapse, the FDIC closed Signature Bank. Both banks funded their companies with a significant percentage of uninsured deposits.


The financial world recently witnessed a seismic event as Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) collapsed, sending shockwaves through the global economy.


Here’s a Timeline of What Happened:

  • 8 March: SVB Financial Group, SVB’s parent company, took drastic measures, selling US2.25 billion worth of SVB shares and offloading US21 billion in portfolio securities, resulting in a staggering loss of US1.8 billion. Withdrawals soared, and the bank teetered on the brink of a run. Prominent investors and depositors, including VCs like Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, Coatue Management, and Union Square Ventures, started abandoning ship.


  • 9 March: Panic gripped investors and depositors, with a staggering US42 billion withdrawn in a single day. SVB’s shares plummeted by over 60%, and its bonds faced record declines. As the bank faced the precipice of a run, CEO Greg Becker urged clients to “stay calm”.


  • 10 March: SVB Financial Group’s shares further nosedived by 47%, leading to a trading halt. The bank explored a potential sale after its attempts to sell its stock failed. This collapse triggered a sector-wide rout in the U.S. banking industry, with S&P 500 banking index declining by 4.2%, following a 6.6% decline the previous Thursday. European banks also felt the repercussions. FDIC took charge, placing the bank under receivership while overseeing its assets to ensure all depositors and creditors received their due. In the UK, regulators deemed SVB no longer viable after a default on a central bank loan, leading to its branch there ceasing to accept deposits and payments.

  • 12 March: New York authorities liquidated Signature Bank but reassured depositors that their funds would be returned. It was emphasized that neither bank’s losses would be covered by taxpayers. Coinbase, with US240 million in deposits at Signature Bank, sought alternative transactions with different banks. Circle, affected by Signature Bank’s closure, embarked on finding a new transaction banking partner. Meanwhile, six Hong King-listed Chinese companies with deposits at SVB noted that their exposure to the bank’s failure was “immaterial”. SVB China joint venture with Shanghai Pudong Development Bank maintained an independent balance sheet and stable corporate structure.


Economic Ramifications

As the dust settles, the U.S. economy now faces a 35% probability of slipping into a recession within a year, a significant increase from the initial 10% likelihood before the banking sector upheaval. Goldman Sachs attributes this heightened risk to mounting stress within the banking industry.


China’s Economic Landscape:

China, on the other hand, grapples with its own challenges. Outgoing Premier Li Keqiang set a conservative target of approximately 5% growth for 2023 during the National People’s Congress. He acknowledged the “many difficulties” the economy faces, including insufficient demand, employment instability, fiscal strains at the local level, a cooling housing market, tepid consumer spending, and elevated youth unemployment.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) has made a surprising move to prop up the economy, cutting the reserve requirement ratio (RRR) for almost all banks by 0.25 percentage points, effective from 27 March 2023.


As these global financial developments unfold, what are your thoughts on the situation?



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