In Our Banks We Trust?
According a recent study by Edelman, a public relations firm, China and India trust their banks more than any other of the 18 economies surveyed. Not so surprising? The Spanish and the Irish trust their banks the least.
You might immediately notice a few apparent trends here. The most-trusted banks are in India and China, where an estimated 80 and 83 percent of people say they trust them. China’s banking system is very tightly controlled by the state – so tightly that many Chinese actually use unofficial, illegal “shadow banking” networks for borrowing and lending.
Trust is by far the lowest in Europe, which is maybe no surprise as the Eurozone crisis drags on. And the numbers across Europe have dropped dramatically since 2008. It’s worth noting that trust is low in two European Union states that are not members of the Eurozone: Sweden and the United Kingdom. But it’s relatively high in Poland, an EU member state, at 44 percent, although Poland also experienced a sharp decline in trust over the past five years.
What’s interesting is that trust in banks seems to line up pretty neatly with economic growth; countries that have more growth also report higher trust in banks. China and India both have rapidly growing gross domestic products. The next most-trusting country, Mexico, reported 3.8 percent GDP growth last year, one of the higher on the list.