12 February 2018

New study: private banks are the most important partners of German exporters

  • Private banks finance 88 per cent of foreign trade
  • Latest ZEW report unveiled

The private banks in Germany are the most important financing partners of the German export sector: the finance for 88 per cent of German foreign trade is handled by private banks. “Germany’s long-running economic upswing is fuelled in part by its internationally active, innovative companies. Our globally operating universal banks provide them with indispensable support,” said Christian Ossig, Chief Executive of the Association of German Banks.

When comes to small and medium-sized enterprises (SME: turnover of up to 50 million euros), private banks are out in front too, with a 49 per cent share of export volumes. On top of that, over 60 per cent of leaders in global niche markets – so-called “hidden champions” – are clients of private banks. These are the findings of a newly published study from December 2017 by Professor Jörg Rocholl, President of the European School of Management and Technology (ESMT) in Berlin, and Professor Sascha Steffen of the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, formerly with the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), entitled “The Importance of the Private Banks to the German Economy”.

Ossig stressed the key role banks play as intermediaries, not only in granting loans but also, and not least, in the capital market. Policymakers wishing to reshape Europe’s financial market should always remember this function. “The plans for banking union and capital markets union should jointly strengthen the role of banks. It is not acceptable for the economy to risk losing financing power as a result of excessive regulation.”

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