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Downward Rate Pressure Slaps Kookmin Depositors With Negative Returns

Mar 28,2001
Kookmin Bank will lower deposit rates on short-term time deposits with maturities of less than a year by half a percentage point starting Thursday.

The base rate for time deposits with maturities of three months will drop to 5 percent from 4.5 percent, and those with maturities of six months will be slashed to 5 percent from 5.5 percent. Deposits with maturities of one year drop to 5.5 percent. This is the lowest rate among banks in the country, and means that savers will lose money after taxes and discounting for inflation.

H&CB will also lower its base rate for time deposits with maturities of less than a year by 0.1 or 0.2 percentage points from the current rate of 5.7 percent. Seoul Bank lowered its deposit rates Tuesday to 5.9 percent, down 0.3 percentage point. Monday, Hanvit and Chohung banks marked down their time deposit rates for maturities of one year to 5.8 percent, down 0.2 percentage points. "We have lowered deposit rates twice this year, so it will be difficult to lower them further," said a Kookmin official. "But short-term deposit rates may be lowered once more since they are considerably higher than long-term rates," he said.


by Oh Jung-hee




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