With Germany’s biggest bank teetering, a private meeting of major investors in London yesterday discussed offloading their assets in the troubled financial giant.
The potential collapse could trigger an economic catastrophe in the EU with Deutsche Bank’s holdings worth two thirds the size of the entire German economy, 25 times bigger than Northern Rock which set off Britain’s 2008 financial crisis when it collapsed.
With a rearguard of so called “Remoaner” MPs try to delay triggering Article 50 and getting Britain out of the EU, a report by thinktank Global Britain has highlighted that unnecessary delay could cost that taxpayer billions.
The report – ‘The Deutsche Bank liability’ – written by Bob Lyddon, a City management consultant with considerable experience of the banking sector, explains why Deutsche Bank is in trouble and how the UK could be stung for billions of pounds.
It notes that the bank cannot get itself easily out of trouble because of the eurozone economy which prevents it from raising private capital and makes it unattractive to outside investors.
Its share value has plummeted by 61 per cent in the last two years which means it can only “create investment” by cutting costs, according to the report.
Mr Lyddon said: “The Deutsche Bank appears to be in serious trouble, it is highly leveraged and facing a fine that would make it even more highly leveraged.
“It is vital that the Treasury and British taxpayers know the potential damage if Deutsche Bank requires a multi-billion-Euro bail-out that the UK might have to contribute to [under EU rules].
“Deutsche Bank has major relationships with the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Investment Bank (EIB), in which the UK is a shareholder. Losses incurred at the ECB or the EIB could cause those institutions to call up new capital from the UK, costing billions of pounds.
Brian Monteith, a director of Global Britain, said: “As the UK goes into its Brexit negotiations it is vital the government gets a grip of the Deutsche Bank situation so that it is not left with any liabilities for the European project that the British public has so convincingly rejected.
“We need assurances from the Chancellor that the risks facing Deutsche Bank will not be rolled over into a multi-billion pound severance charge or liability that comes alive later.
“One of the real dangers of not having a clean Brexit but a long drawn out dirty Brexit is that we stay liable for all the problems that European banks and the Euro are facing.”