Deposit insurance

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Deposit Protection (rare credit assurance is) in the banking system of creditor protection by statutory and voluntary measures, in a banking crisis , the creditors of banks before losing their bank balances to preserve.


Deposit insurance serves to protect the savings and assets of broad sections of the population. This ensures the functioning of the credit system because they in the event of a bank failure a bank run can prevent.

Like any financial investment , bank deposits are also associated with a risk of default , i.e. the risk that the bank cannot repay the investment. The deposit protection instruments reduce this risk, but cannot completely prevent it. The default risk in the case of a guarantee of the deposits corresponds to the level of the default risk of the guarantor, if necessary. The establishment of deposit guarantee systems is particularly intended to prevent the risk of bank rushes .

Worldwide, the task of deposit protection is not taken on by the credit institutions concerned, but is outsourced to legally / economically independent insurance companies (e.g. USA ) or specific deposit protection funds ( EU member states ). Their assets are therefore not affected by a banking crisis.


It was only banking crises , financial crises or economic crises that contributed to the discussion about deposit insurance. A cross-institutional deposit insurance remained unknown until the early 20th century. The first deposit insurance was introduced in the United States in May 1933, when the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) initially insured bank balances of up to US $ 2,500 . The FDIC is a compulsory insurance to which all members of the Federal Reserve System are affiliated. Its foundation was preceded by the Great Depression of October 1929.

The German banking crisis of June 1931, in turn, contributed to the fact that in 1934 the cooperative Volks- und Raiffeisenbanken introduced a security system with the “credit cooperative guarantee fund”, which led to a mandatory membership of credit unions in this deposit protection fund. The Bavarian banking fund for private banks followed in 1959 . In March 1961, the Federal Council recommended that provisions on deposit protection be included in the Banking Act (KWG), which came into force in January 1962 , but this did not happen. The "Community Fund of Private Banking Industry" was founded in May 1966 within the Federal Association of Private Banking Industry . In November 1968 the Federal Government announced that it would submit a law to the Bundestag to introduce comprehensive deposit insurance if it did not succeed “on a voluntary basis to improve the effectiveness of the previous system of the various efforts of individual groups and to improve competition to provide a cost-neutral basis ". Starting on page 138 of this Bundestag printed paper, it dealt in great detail with the reasons and necessities of deposit insurance.

When the Herstatt Bank went bankrupt in June 1974 , the Association of German Banks had a deposit protection fund (“Fire Brigade Fund”) with a coverage of DM 20,000. The efforts of the banking associations to date have been on a voluntary basis. It was not until December 1985 that the European Union began with the UCITS Directive with a statutory security system, which, however, only concerned the cover of Pfandbriefe . In 1986, the then EEC Commission recommended a statutory obligation of banks to participate in security systems ( English deposit guarantee schemes ). The first Deposit Protection Directive 94/19 / EC came out in May 1994. The Deposit Guarantee and Investor Compensation Act has been in force in all EU member states since August 1998, and placed the deposit guarantee of the EU member states on a homogeneous basis. Since May 2015, the Deposit Protection Act (EinSiG) has been in place, which regulates compensation cases ( Section 5 (1) EinSiG and Section 10 EinSiG), lists non-indemnifiable deposits ( Section 6 EinSiG) and the coverage amount of 100,000 euros per investor and per credit institution ( § 8 EinSiG).

Deposit insurance levels

Deposit protection measures are taken at various levels:

Capital requirements

The elementary protective measure for customer deposits is to avoid bankruptcy. A number of provisions of the Banking Act serve this purpose , in particular the capital adequacy provisions of the EU-wide capital adequacy regulation . These rules are intended to ensure that in the event of problems the bank still has sufficient assets to pay off the customers' deposits.

Despite these regulations, bank insolvency cannot be ruled out. Then the next level takes effect:

Liability in the banking group

Often banks are part of corporations or banking groups in which formal (i.e. legally binding) or informal (i.e. voluntary) mutual liability regimes exist.

Legally binding liability rules often exist between parent and subsidiary companies ( letter of comfort ). The so-called institutional security exists at the Sparkasse Group or within the group of cooperative banks . Not only the deposits are protected, but the portfolio of the institute, with the result that bonds from cooperative banks and public savings banks are fully secured.

Statutory deposit insurance

In all developed countries there are legal regulations regarding deposit insurance. In the EU, the minimum requirements are stipulated by the EC directives 94/19 / EC and 97/9 / EC. These were implemented in Germany by the Deposit Protection and Investor Compensation Act (now replaced by the Deposit Protection Act). Since December 2010, 100% of the deposits are protected up to a maximum of € 100,000 per person (in the case of joint accounts 100% of 2 × € 100,000) and an additional 90% of the liabilities from securities transactions up to an equivalent of € 20,000 ( Section 2 (3) EinSiG) . The protection applies to CRR credit institutions and branches of foreign banks ( Section 1 EinSiG).

The governments of Ireland , Greece and Germany announced in September and October 2008 that they would guarantee unlimited deposits in the wake of the turmoil of the financial crisis .

In Ireland , this unlimited guarantee, known as the Credit Institutions (Financial Support) Scheme, was valid for seven major banks until September 29, 2010; In addition, there was the “Credit Institutions (Eligible Liabilities Guarantee)”, which was liable for certain types of deposits with certain banks until June 2012 (as of December 2011).

In Austria , on October 1, 2008, the Council of Ministers decided on unlimited deposit protection, analogous to the German procedure, after the EU finance ministers had agreed on an EU-wide increase in deposit protection from € 20,000 to € 50,000. On December 31, 2009, this unlimited deposit guarantee expired. Since January 1, 2010, deposits by natural persons are guaranteed up to a maximum amount of € 100,000; for partnerships and small corporations up to € 50,000. From 2019, the deposit protection scheme in Austria will be newly regulated and all previous protection schemes will be operated by a joint, Austria-wide protection scheme of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce. The currently valid payout period of 20 days will be reduced to seven days by 2024. In Germany, it is a political declaration of intent by the government; legal implementation was not initially planned. However, according to a later decision at the level of the EU finance ministers, up to € 50,000 has been legally guaranteed since June 30, 2009. The previous loss sharing of the depositors in the amount of 10% of their deposits no longer applies. Since December 31, 2010 it has even increased to € 100,000, which is then 100% legally secured.

The UK is raising the cap from £ 35,000 to £ 50,000 (Deposits (bank balances): £ 85,000). In Sweden, the statutory deposit insurance was increased to € 100,000 in January 2011 following the example of the EU - at the same time the country planned to include branches of foreign banks if the deposit insurance in the home country of these banks was not designed accordingly.

Voluntary bank deposit insurance

In addition to these statutory minimum requirements, banks in many countries offer additional security. In Germany, these are the deposit protection funds of the respective banking associations, which protect customers' deposits far beyond the legal requirements. The contribution rate for the fund for the public-law savings banks is based on regulatory risk factors, while the private deposit insurance system incorporates the risk using a rating approach. The risk-based determination of contributions can include quantitative as well as qualitative risk indicators or a mixture of both. In 1993, the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) was the first to introduce such a risk-based contribution system. The voluntary deposit insurance of private banks in Germany followed in 1996 and the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) in 1999 . The voluntary deposit protection takes into account the basic amount of the statutory deposit protection. If the statutory deposit guarantee does not provide, this amount will not be replaced by the deposit guarantee of the banks. Subsidiaries of foreign banks in Germany also mostly join the German deposit insurance scheme.

Statutory deposit insurance in an international comparison


In Austria, Directive 2014/49 / EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of April 16, 2014 on deposit guarantee systems was implemented with the Federal Act on Deposit Protection and Investor Compensation at Credit Institutions (Deposit Guarantee and Investor Compensation Act - ESAEG) of August 14, 2015.

Deposit protection and investor compensation are carried out in Austria by 2 protection schemes:

  • The deposit protection AUSTRIA GesmbH ( ESA ) is the uniform securing device according to § 1. 2 Einlagensicherungs- and Investor Compensation Act (ESAEG). All credit institutions based in Austria must be members of ESA if they otherwise lose their license to conduct deposit business. As of April 30, 2019, ESA had 496 member institutes . In addition, the professional associations of banks and bankers, the state mortgage banks, the Raiffeisen banks and the Volksbanks as well as the Austrian Chamber of Commerce are shareholders of ESA.

ESA is a member of the European Forum of Deposit Insurers ( EFDI ), based in Brussels, and the International Association of Deposit Insurers ( IADI ), based in Basel .

  • The Sparkassen-liability GmbH is a recognized by the Financial Markets as a deposit guarantee and investor compensation scheme institutional protection scheme for the Austrian savings bank sector belonging to banks, so the savings banks and Erste Bank der österreichischen Sparkassen AG and Erste Group Bank AG.

The savings banks are therefore not members of the ESA (exception: Erste Asset Management GmbH and Bausparkasse der Österreichische Sparkassen AG).

In addition to the statutory deposit protection, some banks have so-called institutional protection systems (IPS) on a contractual basis , in which the participating institutions guarantee each other financial support. Such systems exist, for example, at the Raiffeisen banks and the Volksbanks.

Until December 31, 2018, the deposit protection and investor compensation in Austria was organized by sector, each sector had its own protection scheme in accordance with the professional association regulations of the WKO:

  • FV der Banken & Bankiers: Deposit protection for banks & bankers
  • FV of the Landes-Hypothekenbanken: Hypo-Haftungs-Gesellschaft mbH
  • FV of the Raiffeisen banks: Österreichische Raiffeisen-Einlagensicherung eGen
  • FV der Sparkassen: Sparkassen-Haftungs AG
  • FV der Volksbanken: Volksbank Einlagensicherung eG

The deposit insurance of Banken & Bankiers already became active with the insolvencies of BWI in 1995, Diskont Bank and Riegerbank in 1998, and Trigonbank in 2001. For these four cases, the deposit insurance had to raise a total of € 140 million .

Since January 1, 2010, the maximum amount covered by the deposit guarantee has been € 100,000 per person and bank.


In Switzerland, since December 2008, deposits of up to CHF 100,000  (approx. € 95,000) per investor and bank have been protected in certain cases. The total amount of depositor compensation is limited to 6 billion Swiss francs, so the protection is relative. Protection is guaranteed by the Esisuisse association , which is not a state institution, but was founded in the legal form of an association in 2005. Of the 24 cantonal banks , 21 (as of July 2015) have the full state guarantee (state = canton ). The cantonal banks Banque Cantonale Vaudoise , Berner Kantonalbank and Banque Cantonale de Genève no longer have a state guarantee.

With the upper limit of 6 billion francs, 60,000 bank customers can expect the full payout. If a larger bank becomes insolvent, the amount is reduced accordingly. For a large bank with 1 million investors, the sum would be reduced to 6,000 francs.

Following criticism from the International Monetary Fund and the Financial Stability Board , the Swiss Federal Council has approved a proposal for improvements. Banks are supposed to secure half of their guarantee obligations in the form of deposited securities as collateral. The maximum of the total insured amount should now be 1.6% of all insured deposits instead of CHF 6 billion, with a minimum of CHF 6 billion. With CHF 430 billion of relevant deposits at the end of 2015, this would be around CHF 6.9 billion. In addition, the payment deadline is to be shortened to seven working days.


Deposit insurance in Germany consists of two pillars:

Statutory deposit protection : regulated by the Deposit Protection and Investor Compensation Act; Minimum protection according to the requirements of the EU

Voluntary deposit insurance schemes : protection beyond the legal minimum

Two banking groups have their own systems that protect member companies, so-called group- internal security systems :

Both of these systems are recognized by law as being equivalent to the statutory deposit guarantee system; both groups of banks are therefore exempt from the deposit guarantee system.

As of July 1, 2009, the German deposit insurance was increased from € 20,000 to € 50,000. As of December 31, 2010, the amount increased to € 100,000. The law also limits the period for payments to a maximum of 30 days and abolishes the loss sharing for depositors of 10%.

European Union

EU guidelines

With Directive 2014/49 / EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of April 16, 2014 on deposit guarantee systems, the deposit guarantee was fundamentally restructured. The guideline provides for a harmonized coverage of € 100,000 per identifiable depositor, a step-by-step reduction in the reimbursement period to 7 days from 2024 at the latest, and comprehensive information obligations on the part of banks towards depositors. Under certain circumstances, deposits over € 100,000 can also be secured ( temporary high balances ; e.g. deposits that result from real estate transactions in connection with privately used residential property and that were created within a certain period of time before the occurrence of the insured event). In order to ensure that depositors enjoy a comparably high level of protection in all member states, every deposit guarantee scheme is obliged to set up a deposit guarantee fund with an ex-ante target of 0.8% of the covered deposits of its member institutions by July 2024. Financing is provided through regular risk-weighted contributions from the member institutes.

Additional coverage in the EU countries

The individual European states have implemented the EC directive differently. For branches of banks in other countries, the following boundaries of the country in which the headquarters are located apply.


Country Protected portion of the deposit Maximum amount of compensation per person per bank was standing
Belgium 100% € 100,000 February 2010
Bulgaria 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Denmark 100% € 100,000 October 2010
Germany 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Estonia 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Finland 100% € 100,000 January 2011
France 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Greece 100% € 100,000 November 2008
Great Britain 100% £ 85,000 December 2016
Ireland 100% € 100,000 December 2010
Italy 100% € 100,000 May 2011
Latvia 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Luxembourg 100% € 100,000 January 2010
Malta 100% € 100,000 May 2011
Netherlands 100% € 100,000 January 2010
Austria 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Poland 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Portugal 100% € 100,000 October 2010
Romania 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Sweden 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Slovakia 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Slovenia 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Spain 100% € 100,000 October 2010
Czech Republic 100% € 100,000 January 2011
Hungary 100% € 100,000 January 2011

In the UK, the Financial Services Compensations Scheme (FSCS) is responsible for safeguarding customer deposits . Through October 1, 2007, the maximum amount was £ 31,700 (100% of the first £ 2,000 and 90% of an additional £ 33,000). From October 1, 2007 to October 6, 2008, there was a 100% rule up to a maximum of £ 35,000. Since October 7, 2008, the rate has been 100% for the first £ 50,000 or € 50,000 per person and company. Since December 31, 2010, a new upper limit has been in effect in accordance with the current EU directives of £ 75,000 (approx. € 88,000, as of December 2016). All companies that are subject to the UK's Financial Services Authority (FSA) have to pay contributions to finance the FSCS.


There are often comparable regulations outside of the European Union. The exact conditions vary depending on the national legal system.

Country Maximum amount of compensation
Norway 2 million NOK (approx. € 236,000)
Iceland € 20,887
Russia 1,400,000 RUB (approx. 18,500 €)
Japan JPY 10 million (approx. € 77,000)
Switzerland 100,000 CHF (approx. 96,500 €), max. 6 billion CHF total
Canada 100,000 CAD (approx. 76,000 €).
United States 250,000 USD (approx. 231,000 €)

In the United States, investors are protected up to $ 100,000 under the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. The protection seller is the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). In the context of the financial crisis from 2007 onwards, the deposit insurance had been extended to up to $ 250,000 - temporarily until December 31, 2009. Under the Dodd – Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act , the deposit protection was permanently increased to $ 250,000.

In Canada, the banknotes issued by commercial banks until 1942, which were not legal tender, had been guaranteed since 1890 by a fund into which the institutions had to pay one-twentieth of their authorized amount with interest.


Without deposit protection, in the worst case scenario a banking crisis would trigger a bank run , which would lead to massive cash payments that would quickly bring a bank to insolvency . This triggers a race among investors for cash balances at banks, which can mean the losers lose their financial investments . Deposit protection that protects the depositor gives the depositor the certainty that in case of doubt his bank balances are not secured by the bank concerned, but by the institutions protecting the depositor. Therefore the EinSiG according to § 5 Abs. 1 EinSiG gives the depositor a legal claim to compensation in the event of compensation. The law protects according to § 8 Abs. 1 EinSiG

  • 100% of the deposits, a maximum of the equivalent of 100,000 euros (coverage) and
  • 90% of the liabilities from securities transactions, a maximum of the equivalent of 20,000 euros

per customer and institute. Deposit insurance is part of banking regulation , as it requires credit institutions to set up and operate insurance companies (FDIC in the US) or funds (in EU member states) that are monitored by banking regulators .

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Jürgen Krumnow, Ludwig Gramlich, Thomas A. Lange, Thomas M. Dewner (eds.): Gabler Bank-Lexikon. Bank - Stock Exchange - Financing . Springer, 2002, ISBN 3-663-07651-2 , pp. 421 ( limited preview in Google Book search).
  2. ^ University of Frankfurt am Main, Institute for Cooperatives, Publications of the Institute for Cooperatives at the University of Frankfurt a. Main , Volume 6, 1934, p. 219
  3. BT-Drs. 5/3500 of November 18, 1968, Federal Government Report on the Investigation of the Shifts in Competition in the Banking Industry and on Deposit Insurance , p. III
  4. Josef Isensee / Paul Kirchhof (ed.), Handbuch des Staatsrechts: Volume XI: Internationale Bezüge , 2013, p. 995
  5. RL 94/19 / EG summary
  6. Wording of Directive 94/19 / EC
  7. RL 97/9 / EG summary
  8. Wording of Directive 97/9 / EC
  9. Ireland steps in for bank deposits ( Memento from August 4, 2012 in the web archive ). In: Financial Times Deutschland , September 30, 2008. Retrieved October 5, 2008
  10. dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH, federal government promises complete protection for private savings , from October 5, 2008, accessed on October 5, 2008
  11. moneyguideireland, Irish deposits Guarantee after September 2010
  12. ORF.AT: Government appeases savers ( memento of the original from October 11, 2008 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  14. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung of October 6, 2008, Government plans no law for state deposit guarantee
  15. Government does not plan a State Deposit Guarantee Act ., October 6, 2008. Retrieved August 4, 2013.
  16., financial market crisis
  17., savings deposits
  18. Swedish deposit insurance ( memento of the original from August 11, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (en) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  19. The security system of the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe - Retrieved December 12, 2019 .
  20. Christina Weymann Bernd Bretschneider: Archive_Singleview. April 6, 2018, accessed December 12, 2019 .
  21. Alexander Ufier, John O'Keefe, Dr Ralf Benna, Bernd Walter Bretschneider, Mirjami Maija Kajander-Saarikoski: Deposit insurance systems: addressing emerging challenges in funding, investment, risk-based contributions, and stress testing . No. 121708 . The World Bank, November 1, 2017, p. 1–168 ( [accessed December 12, 2019]).
  22. Steffen Preißler, Auslandsbanken: The deposit insurance has loopholes . In: Hamburger Abendblatt, December 4, 2008, p. 26
  23. a b Federal Council enacts provisions for better protection of bank deposits. In: from August 24, 2011
  24. a b c Deposit insurance for Swiss banks and securities dealers
  25. Legal form and state guarantee of the cantonal banks. ( Memento of the original from March 24, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. In:, as of July 2015 (PDF file; 96 kB) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  26. ^ State guarantee. ( Memento of the original from April 7, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. In:, accessed on July 21, 2015 @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  27. Hansueli Schöchli: The Federal Council wants to expand depositor protection. Neue Zürcher Zeitung, February 16, 2017, p. 27.
  28. Michael Ferber: Deposit protection association turns against the sovereign money initiative. Neue Zürcher Zeitung, June 9, 2018, accessed on June 10, 2018
  29. ^ Financial Services Compensation Scheme
  30. On December 28, 2010, the Irish government also stated that: A. fully guarantee for all deposits; Irish government guarantees all deposits with banks . In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , September 30, 2008. Accessed August 3, 2013.
  31. Garanzia dei Depositanti ( Memento of the original of March 17, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . FITD website - Fondo Interbancario di Tutela dei Depositi (Italian). Retrieved August 3, 2013. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  32. Dirk Heilmann / Sonia Shinde: Save money, who can . In: Handelsblatt , September 17, 2007. Accessed March 31, 2016.
  33. How safe your money is elsewhere (Focus; Source: Deutsche Bundesbank)
  34. (Icelandic Deposit Protection Fund)
  35. , as of December 7, 2015
  36. a b Basic FDIC Insurance Coverage Permanently Increased to $ 250,000 Per Depositor . Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), July 21, 2010. Retrieved February 7, 2012.
  37. FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage ( Memento of January 14, 2009 in the Internet Archive )
  38. James Holladay; The Currency of Canada, American Economic Review, Vol. 24, No. 2 (Jun., 1934), pp. 266-278