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A commercial bank (or business bank) is a type of financial institution and intermediary. It is a bank that lends money and provides transactional, savings, and money market accounts and that accepts time deposit. Commercial banks represent the core of the credit for any national economy. In turn, the credit is the engine that put in motion the financial flows that determine growth and economic development of a nation. As a result, any efficiency in the activities of commercial banks has special implications on the entire economy.

That is why we consider very useful to present an analysis of possibilities for evaluating the performance in the commercial banks. The management of every commercial bank must establish a system for assessing investment performance which suits its circumstances and needs and this evaluation must be done at consecutive intervals to ensure the achievement of the Bank’s investment objectives of hand; and to know the general direction of the behaviour of investment activity in the past and therefore predictable as it in the future on the other hand. Because of the crucial role that commercial banks hold in the financial sector, this paper focuses specifically on the managing core risks is banking sector as a vital segment of the whole economy, without which no modern economy can exercise the role and own functions.

Origin of the word

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The name bank derives from the Italian word banco “desk/bench”, used during the Renaissanceera by Florentine bankers, who used to make their transactions above a desk covered by a green tablecloth. However, traces of banking activity can be found even in ancient times.

The role of commercial banks

Commercial banks engage in the following activities:

  • processing of payments by way of telegraphic transfer, EFTPOS, internet banking, or other means
  • issuing bank drafts and bank cheques
  • accepting money on term deposit
  • lending money by overdraft, installment loan, or other means
  • roviding documentary and standby letter of credit, guarantees, performance bonds, securities underwriting commitments and other forms of off balance sheet exposures
  • safekeeping of documents and other items in safe deposit boxes
  • sales, distribution or brokerage, with or without advice, of: insurance, unit trusts and similar financial products as a “financial supermarket”
  • cash management and treasury
  • merchant banking and private equity financing traditionally, large commercial banks also underwrite bonds, and make markets in currency, interest rates, and credit-related securities, but today large commercial banks usually have an investment bank arm that is involved in the mentioned activities[clarify].

Secured loan

A secured loan is a loan in which the borrower pledges some asset (e. g. a car or property) as collateral for the loan, which then becomes a secured debt owed to the creditor who gives the loan. The debt is thus secured against the collateral — in the event that the borrower defaults, the creditor takes possession of the asset used as collateral and may sell it to regain some or all of the amount originally lent to the borrower, for example, foreclosure of a home. From the creditor’s perspective this is a category of debt in which a lender has been granted a portion of the bundle of rights to specified property. If the sale of the collateral does not raise enough money to pay off the debt, the creditor can often obtain a deficiency judgment against the borrower for the remaining amount.

The opposite of secured debt/loan is unsecured debt, which is not connected to any specific piece of property and instead the creditor may only satisfy the debt against the borrower rather than the borrower’s collateral and the borrower. A mortgage loan is a very common type of debt instrument, used to purchase real estate. Under this arrangement, the money is used to purchase the property. Commercial banks, however, are given security – a lien on the title to the house – until the mortgage is paid off in full. If the borrower defaults on the loan, the bank would have the legal right to epossess the house and sell it, to recover sums owing to it. In the past, commercial banks have not been greatly interested in real estate loans and have placed only a relatively small percentage of assets in mortgages. As their name implies, such financial institutions secured their earning primarily from commercial and consumer loans and left the major task of home financing to others. However, due to changes in banking laws and policies, commercial banks are increasingly active in home financing. Changes in banking laws now allow commercial banks to make home mortgage loans on a more liberal basis than ever before.

In acquiring mortgages on real estate, these institutions follow two main practices. First, some of the banks maintain active and well-organized departments whose primary function is to compete actively for real estate loans. In areas lacking specialized real estate financial institutions, these banks become the source for residential and farm mortgage loans. Second, the banks acquire mortgages by simply purchasing them from mortgage bankers or dealers. In addition, dealer service companies, which were originally used to obtain car loans for permanent lenders such as commercial banks, wanted to broaden their activity beyond their local area.

In recent years, however, such companies have concentrated on acquiring mobile home loans in volume for both commercial banks and savings and loan associations. Service companies obtain these loans from retail dealers, usually on a nonrecourse basis. Almost all bank/service company agreements contain a credit insurance policy that protects the lender if the consumer defaults. [edit]Unsecured loan Unsecured loans are monetary loans that are not secured against the borrower’s assets (i. e. , no collateral is involved). There are small businesss unsecured loans such as credit cards and credit lines to large corporate credit lines.

These may be available from financial institutions under many different guises or marketing packages:

An overdraft occurs when money is withdrawn from a bank account and the available balance goes below zero. In this situation the account is said to be “overdrawn”. If there is a prior agreement with the account provider for an overdraft, and the amount overdrawn is within the authorized overdraft limit, then interest is normally charged at the agreed rate. If the POSITIVE balance exceeds the agreed terms, then additional fees may be charged and higher interest rates may apply.

  • corporate bonds credit card debt
  • credit facilities or lines of credit
  • personal loans

What makes a bank limited liability company

A corporate bond is a bond issued by a corporation. It is a bond that a corporation issues to raise money in order to expand its business. The term is usually applied to longer-term debt instruments, generally with a maturity date falling at least a year after their issue date. (The term “commercial paper” is sometimes used for instruments with a shorter maturity. ) Sometimes, the term “corporate bonds” is used to include all bonds except those issued by governments in their own currencies.

Strictly speaking, however, it only applies to those issued by corporations. The bonds of local authorities and supranational organizations do not fit in either category. [clarification needed] Corporate bonds are often listed on major exchanges (bonds there are called “listed” bonds) and ECNs like Bonds. com and MarketAxess, and the coupon (i. e. interest payment) is usually taxable. Sometimes this coupon can be zero with a high redemption value. However, despite being listed on exchanges, the vast majority of trading volume in corporate bonds in most developed markets takes place in decentralized, dealer-based, over-the-counter markets.

Some corporate bonds have an embedded call option that allows the issuer to redeem the debt before its maturity date. Other bonds, known as convertible bonds, allow investors to convert the bond into equity. Corporate Credit spreads may alternatively be earned in exchange for default risk through the mechanism of Credit Default Swaps which give an unfunded synthetic exposure to similar risks on the same ‘Reference Entities’. However, owing to quite volatile CDS ‘basis’ the spreads on CDS and the credit spreads on corporate bonds can be significantly different. Assets and Liabilities of Commercial Banks in the United States.

Mortgage constant Functions of Commercial Banks

Commercial bank being the financial institution performs diverse types of functions. It satisfies the financial needs of the sectors such as agriculture, industry, trade, communication, etc. That means they play very significant role in a process of economic social needs. The functions performed by banks are changing according to change in time and recently they are becoming customer centric and widening their functions. Generally the functions of commercial banks are divided into two categories viz. rimary functions and the secondary functions. The following chart simplifies the functions of banks. Primary Functions of Commercial Banks Commercial Banks performs various primary functions some of them are given below 1 Accepting Deposits : Commercial bank accepts various types of deposits from public especially from its clients. It includes saving account deposits, recurring account deposits, fixed deposits, etc. These deposits are payable after a certain time period 2 Making Advances : The commercial banks provide loans and advances of various forms. It includes an over draft facility, cash credit, bill discounting, etc. They also give demand and demand and term loans to all types of clients against proper security.

Credit creation :

It is most significant function of the commercial banks. While sanctioning a loan to a customer, a bank does not provide cash to the borrower Instead it opens a deposit account from where the borrower can withdraw. In other words while sanctioning a loan a bank automatically creates deposits. This is known as a credit creation from commercial bank. Secondary Functions of Commercial Banks Along with the primary functions each commercial bank has to perform several secondary functions too.

It includes many agency functions or general utility functions. The secondary functions of commercial banks can be divided into agency functions and utility functions.

Agency Functions :

  • Various agency functions of commercial banks are to collect and clear cheque, dividends and interest warrant.
  •  To make payment of rent, insurance premium, etc.
  • To deal in foreign exchange transactions.
  • To purchase and sell securities.
  • To act as trusty, attorney, correspondent and executor.
  • To accept tax proceeds and tax returns.

General Utility Functions :

  • The general utility functions of the commercial banks include
  • To provide safety locker facility to customers.
  • To provide money transfer facility.
  • To issue traveller’s cheque.
  • To act as referees.
  • To accept various bills for payment e. g phone bills, gas bills, water bills, etc.
  • To provide merchant banking facility.
  • To provide various cards such as credit cards, debit cards, Smart cards, etc.

Andrievskiy Wealth Management establishes bank accounts for onshore and offshore companies and private individuals with one of the oldest banks in Switzerland, for asset management as well as for purely commercial transfers. Andrievskiy Wealth Management doesn’t charge any commissions for bank account openings. Time period of an account opening: 7-10 days (available by mail) * Price: free of charge * Getting keys of electronic access to the account (e-banking). Time period of getting keys: 7 days, Registering management mandate according to your strategy: 1 day. The minimum recommended amount to open a Swiss bank account is 500 000 CHF.  Receiving reports: quarterly or on request Opening a Swiss bank account in the Internet age is a very easy thing to do.

The main reason for opening a Swiss bank account is for the extreme security and privacy Swiss Banks uphold thanks to Swiss laws that have been in effect for over 75 years. Contrary to popular belief, opening a Swiss bank account does not always mean that you are a tax evader, criminal, or money launderer. Swiss bank accounts can protect one’s money from prying relatives, nasty divorce settlements, lawsuits, and more. Some people just want a Swiss bank account because of the allure and mystery often attached to Swiss bank accounts, but whatever your reasons it is relatively easy to find a bank and open an account.

Till the end of the last century, opening a Swiss bank account may have included visiting the bank of your choice in person, paying hundreds of dollars a year in fees, and putting down a few thousand dollars as an initial deposit. As the Internet has allowed online banking to explode, you can now open a bank account at thousands of banks around the world wherever you are. Offshore bank accounts are available to anyone with money that needs a place to be kept, Swiss banks have a lot of competition these days. Sticking to trusted and insured banks is always the way to go.

While most banks today have secure online banking and security features in place, a Swiss bank account comes built in with some of the strictest privacy laws in the world. Never wire money or deposit money to any site or bank without first verifying that the bank or site is secure and licensed to do banking. Making sure deposits are insured is also a good idea and be mindful that not all banks may be insured or may have deposit insurance limits. Read reviews and ask questions about the Swiss bank you choose before providing any personal information.

Once you’ve found a good Swiss bank and open an account you’ll enjoy financial privacy at a level found only in Switzerland. In 1934, the Swiss passed a law that made it a criminal offense for bankers to reveal the identity of account holders. There are two reasons why this protection was reinforced: Nazi spies: The 1931 crisis led to intensified foreign exchange control in Germany. Hitler promulgated a law whereby any German with foreign capital was to be punished by death, and the Gestapo began espionage on Swiss banks. When three Germans were put to death, the Swiss government was convinced of the necessity to reinforce bank secrecy.

Pressure from the French: The 1932 Basler Handelsbank affair revealed that over 2,000 members of the French elite had accounts in Switzerland. French Leftists took advantage of this to denounce the austerity program of the government. It called for legal authority over French accounts in Switzerland, but to no avail. Unlike American law where law enforcement agencies, the judicial system, and private citizens can gain access to all kinds of financial information, under Swiss law neither the bank’s officers or the its employees are allowed to reveal any information, relative to any account to anyone, including the Swiss government.

No private citizen or their legal representative can ever receive any type of information about anyone’s Swiss bank account under any set of conditions. That includes all types of legal proceedings that the Swiss classify as non-criminal behavior. The Swiss consider tax evasion a political offense. Divorce, inheritance disputes and bankruptcy cases are considered private matters, and as such the secrecy of the account is protected from any legal action to verify the presence of, or attempts to seize any assets. There are some notable exceptions.

The Swiss are bound by a treaty with the US to reveal accounts connected with organized crime, drug trafficking and insider trading. But the final say on revealing the identity of the account holder is up to the Swiss authorities. 7 myths about Swiss bank accounts Swiss bank accounts are only for millionaires. This is not true. The majority of our clients are not major manufacturers or movie stars, but everyday people (business people, computer engineers, civil servants, etc. ). Swiss banks are no longer only for stars. You can open a Swiss bank account with a deposit of only 5,000 Swiss francs.

We even offer accounts with no minimum balance. Money invested in Switzerland yields no interest. Nothing could be more untrue. You can invest your money worldwide from your account in Switzerland. Swiss bankers are among the best finance managers in the world, so it comes as no surprise that they manage over 35% of offshore holdings. It’s impossible to open an account in Switzerland by correspondence This is not true. Most of the accounts that we offer can be opened by correspondence as long as you comply with our opening procedures and provide us with the necessary documents.

What is more, your banking relations can be conducted by correspondence, using the telephone, Internet banking, bank transfer and credit cards. That said, we encourage our customers to meet with their banker at least once in order to get acquainted and see where their money is held. Swiss bank accounts are very expensive to maintain This is not true. Most of the accounts we open don’t charge a cent in annual fees. Even if you would like additional services such as retained correspondence or numbered banking relations, the annual fees are very reasonable.

It is difficult to close a Swiss bank account On the contrary. You can close your account in Switzerland whenever you wish and without any restriction. You will pay no financial penalty. If need be, you will just have to realize your investments. Contrary to many onshore banking practices, your money is not held hostage by Swiss banks. Swiss bank accounts attract only criminals and dictators Not true! The vast majority of Swiss bank account holders are honest people who want to keep their savings in a country renowned for its stability.

Swiss banks are extremely cautious regarding politicians who wish to open an account and they systematically refuse to accept any money that is of dubious origin or poorly founded. Numbered accounts are anonymous There are no anonymous accounts in Switzerland. A numbered account is an account that is identified solely by a number, rather than a name, in order to preserve the strictest confidentiality possible during teller transactions or bank transfers. Only the bank manager and a few select people know the identity of numbered account holders. There exist two different types Swiss bank accounts.

The first is accessible to (almost) anyone. Such an account will offer credit and debit cards, checking or whatever else you may want in a bank account. Opening such an account can be done in person–some Swiss banks have branches here in the US–or by mail. Then there are the Swiss bank accounts you’ve heard about from the movies. These are the numbered accounts, the ones with minimum balances anywhere from $100,000 to $1 million. It’s known as private banking and it’s reserved for folks who have a lot of assets to manage and who demand a lot of service.

The services you receive at a private bank focus on private counseling in aspects of wealth management including investments, tax concerns, and estate planning. The numbered accounts aren’t anonymous, but only a few people know the name of the account holder and Swiss law forbids them from revealing it to most anyone. They can’t acknowledge that you have an account, give out the name of a numbered account holder or reveal any information about the transactions of any account holder. Generally, numbered accounts must be opened in person, though lawyers and/or brokers can perform this service for you by mail.

Your signature and identity have to be authenticated by a notary public or consul, depending on circumstances. If you’ve got the money and want to open such account, here are links to the private banking departments of some well known Swiss banks: Ask Dr. Econ July 2001 What Is the Economic Function of a Bank? Commercial banks play an important role in the financial system and the economy. As a key component of the financial system, banks allocate funds from savers to borrowers in an efficient manner. They provide specialized financial services, which reduce the cost of obtaining information about both savings and borrowing opportunities.

These financial services help to make the overall economy more efficient. Imagine a World Without Banks One way to answer your question is to imagine, for a moment, a world without banking institutions, and then to ask yourself a few questions. This is not just an academic exercise; many former eastern-block nations began facing this question when they began to create financial markets and develop market-oriented banks and other financial institutions. If there were no banks –

  • Where would you go to borrow money?
  • What would you do with your savings?
  • Would you be able to borrow (save) as much as you need, when you need t, in a form that would be convenient for you?
  • What risks might you face as a saver (borrower)?
  • How Banks Work Banks operate by borrowing funds-usually by accepting deposits or by borrowing in the money markets.

Banks borrow from individuals, businesses, financial institutions, and governments with surplus funds (savings). They then use those deposits and borrowed funds (liabilities of the bank) to make loans or to purchase securities (assets of the bank). Banks make these loans to businesses, other financial institutions, individuals, and governments (that need the funds for investments or other purposes).

Interest rates provide the price signals for borrowers, lenders, and banks. Through the process of taking deposits, making loans, and responding to interest rate signals, the banking system helps channel funds from savers to borrowers in an efficient manner. Savers range from an individual with a $1,000 certificate of deposit to a corporation with millions of dollars in temporary savings. Banks also service a wide array of borrowers, from an individual who takes a loan of $100 on a credit card to a major corporation financing a billion-dollar corporate merger.

The table below provides a June 2001 snapshot of the balance sheet for the entire U. S. commercial banking industry. It shows that the bulk of banks’ sources of funds comes from deposits – checking, savings, money market deposit accounts, and time certificates. The most common uses of these funds are to make real estate and commercial and industrial loans. Individual banks’ asset and liability composition may vary widely from the industry figures, because some institutions provide specialized or limited banking services. Banks Are Only One Type of Financial Intermediary Finally, the U. S. financial services industry and financial markets are highly developed. In recent decades, many new products and services have been created, as well as new financial instruments and institutions. Today, in addition to banks, there are several other important types of financial intermediaries. These include savings institutions, credit unions, insurance companies, mutual funds, pension funds, finance companies, and real estate investment trusts (REITS). Banks’ assets have grown in recent decades in absolute terms; however, banks have tended to lose market share to even aster growing intermediaries such as pension funds and mutual funds. Still, banks continue to account for a significant share-over 23 percent-of the assets of all financial intermediaries at the end of year 2000, as the chart below shows. The main functions of commercial banks are accepting deposits from the public and advancing them loans. However, besides these functions there are many other functions which these banks perform. All these functions can be divided under the following heads:

  • Accepting deposits
  • Giving loans
  • Overdraft
  • Discounting of Bills of Exchange
  • Investment of Funds
  • Agency Functions
  • Miscellaneous Functions

Accepting Deposits:

The most important function of commercial banks is to accept deposits from the public. Various sections of society, according to their needs and economic condition, deposit their savings with the banks. For example, fixed and low income group people deposit their savings in small amounts from the points of view of security, income and saving promotion. On the other hand, traders and businessmen deposit their savings in the banks for the convenience of payment.

Therefore, keeping the needs and interests of various sections of society, banks formulate various deposit schemes. Generally, there ire three types of deposits which are as follows:

  • Current Deposits: The depositors of such deposits can withdraw and deposit money whenever they desire. Since banks have to keep the deposited amount of such accounts in cash always, they carry either no interest or very low rate of interest. These deposits are called as Demand Deposits because these can be demanded or withdrawn by the depositors at any time they want. Such deposit accounts are highly useful for traders and big business firms because they have to make payments and accept payments many times in a day.
  • Fixed Deposits: These are the deposits which are deposited for a definite period of time. This period is generally not less than one year and, therefore, these are called as long term deposits. These deposits cannot be withdrawn before the expiry of the stipulated time and, therefore, these are also called as time deposits. These deposits generally carry a higher rate of interest because banks can use these deposits for a definite time without having the fear of being withdrawn.
  • Saving Deposits: In such deposits, money upto a certain limit can be deposited and withdrawn once or twice in a week. On such deposits, the rate of interest is very less. As is evident from the name of such deposits their main objective is to mobilise small savings in the form of deposits. These deposits are generally done by salaried people and the people who have fixed and less income.

Giving Loans:

The second important function of commercial banks is to advance loans to its customers. Banks charge interest from the borrowers and this is the main source of their income. Banks advance loans not only on the basis of the deposits of the public rather they also advance loans on the basis of depositing the money in the accounts of borrowers. In other words, they create loans out of deposits and deposits out of loans. This is called as credit creation by commercial banks. Modern banks give mostly secured loans for productive purposes. In other words, at the time of advancing loans, they demand proper security or collateral. Generally, the value of security or collateral is equal to the amount of loan.

This is done mainly with a view to recover the loan money by selling the security in the event of non-refund of the loan. At limes, banks give loan on the basis of personal security also. Therefore, such loans are called as unsecured loan. Banks generally give following types of loans and advances:

  • Cash Credit: In this type of credit scheme, banks advance loans to its customers on the basis of bonds, inventories and other approved securities. Under this scheme, banks enter into an agreement with its customers to which money can e withdrawn many times during a year. Under this set up banks open accounts of their customers and deposit the loan money. With this type of loan, credit is created.
  • Demand loans: These are such loans that can be recalled on demand by the banks. The entire loan amount is paid in lump sum by crediting it to the loan account of the borrower, and thus entire loan becomes chargeable to interest with immediate effect.
  • Short-term loan: These loans may be given as personal loans, loans to finance working capital or as priority sector advances.

These are made against some security and entire loan amount is transferred to the loan account of the borrower.


Banks advance loans to its customer’s upto a certain amount through over-drafts, if there are no deposits in the current account. For this banks demand a security from the customers and charge very high rate of interest.

Discounting of Bills of Exchange:

This is the most prevalent and important method of advancing loans to the traders for short-term purposes. Under this system, banks advance loans to the traders and business firms by discounting their bills. In this way, businessmen get loans on the basis of their bills of exchange before the time of their maturity.

Investment of Funds:

The banks invest their surplus funds in three types of securities—Government securities, other approved securities and other securities. Government securities include both, central and state governments, such as treasury bills, national savings certificate etc. Other securities include securities of state associated bodies like electricity boards, housing boards, debentures of Land Development Banks units of UTI, shares of Regional Rural banks etc.

Agency Functions:

  • Banks function in the form of agents and representatives of their customers. Customers give their consent for performing such functions. The important functions of these types are as follows:
  • Banks collect cheques, drafts, bills of exchange and dividends of the shares for their customers.
  • Banks make payment for their clients and at times accept the bills of exchange: of their customers for which payment is made at the fixed time.
  • Banks pay insurance premium of their customers. Besides this, they also deposit loan installments, income-tax, interest etc. s per directions.
  • Banks purchase and sell securities, shares and debentures on behalf of their customers.
  • Banks arrange to send money from one place to another for the convenience of their customers.

Miscellaneous Functions:

  • Besides the functions mentioned above, banks perform many other functions of general utility which are as follows:
  • Banks make arrangement of lockers for the safe custody of valuable assets of their customers such as gold, silver, legal documents etc.
  • Banks give reference for their customers.
  • Banks collect necessary and useful statistics relating to trade and industry.
  • For facilitating foreign trade, banks undertake to sell and purchase foreign exchange.
  • Banks advise their clients relating to investment decisions as specialist
  • Bank does the under-writing of shares and debentures also.
  • Banks issue letters of credit.
  • During natural calamities, banks are highly useful in mobilizing funds and donations.
  • Banks provide loans for consumer durables like Car, Air-conditioner, and Fridge etc.

Cite this Page

Commercial Bank. (2017, Apr 08). Retrieved from

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