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First fall in Belgian savings since 2001

Published on 07/11/2005

7 November 2005

BRUSSELS — The amount of money Belgian households have in savings accounts has declined for the first time since the start of 2001.

Savings fell by EUR 2.4 billion to EUR 155.2 billion in the third quarter of 2005, Flemish newspaper ‘De Tijd’ reported on Monday.
Households are searching for more higher-yielding investments due to low savings interest rates. Banks are reporting strong investments in investment funds.

The historic low market rate of interest saw the nation’s largest banks cut their savings interest rates to an all-time low on 1 August.

The banks reduced base interest by 0.25 percent to 1.25 percent. Conversion premiums remained stable at 1.5 percent.

Belgium is traditionally a nation of savers and the last time the total amount of savings fell was in the first quarter of 2001.

Together with Swiss and Japanese households, Belgians remains, however, among the world’s biggest savers, broadcaster VRT reported.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news