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Depositors are next as Nordic banks buckle under negative rates

Ever since negative interest rates became a thing, banks have been too afraid to pass them on to retail depositors. That may be about to change.

Jesper Berg, the head of the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority in Copenhagen. | Photo: Jens Henrik Daugaard/ERH

In Scandinavia, where sub-zero rates have been the norm longer than most other places, the finance industry has undergone several drastic adjustments to survive the regime. Banks have relied more on asset management and other services that generate fees, and less on the traditional business of lending and holding deposits.

But with no end to negative rates in sight, those changes may not be enough.

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