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Interbank Deposits


Interbank deposits refer to the funds that banks hold in accounts at other banks. They are a significant part of a bank’s overall liabilities and are often used for purposes such as meeting reserve requirements, facilitating transactions, and maintaining operational liquidity. These can also serve as a form of borrowing between banks which requires repayment with interest.


The phonetic pronunciation of “Interbank Deposits” in IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) is /ˈɪn.tər.bæŋk dɪˈpɑː.zɪts/

Key Takeaways

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  1. Interbank Deposits are short-term loans between banks where one bank lends extra money it has to another one in need. This is done to ensure liquidity and proper money management.
  2. The rate of interest on these loans is called the interbank rate. It is essential because it affects the lending rates given to the bank’s customers and therefore can influence economic conditions.
  3. Interbank Deposits are regulated by the same central banks that oversee the banking system. The goal is to maintain economic stability and prevent any crises.

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Interbank deposits are important in the business and finance sector because they facilitate easy and efficient transactions between different financial institutions. These transactions are mainly used to manage liquidity and meet regulatory requirements, providing a flexible avenue for banks to lend or borrow from each other depending on their immediate financial needs. They comprise a significant part of the money market and play a crucial role in the implementation of monetary policy by central banks. Therefore, understanding interbank deposits is essential in comprehending the broader financial and economic system, due to their impact on interest rates, liquidity, and the overall stability of the banking sector.


Interbank Deposits serve a critical purpose in the banking sector, mainly contributing to the stabilization and efficiency of the financial system. They function as an essential tool for risk management by providing banks with an ability to manage their liquidity needs effectively. Interbank Deposits represent the short-term funds that banks lend to each other, which can be useful for a bank that urgently needs capital. They are often used to meet reserve requirements set by regulators, preventing banks from suddenly running out of necessary funds. Another fundamental use of Interbank Deposits is to facilitate intra-day payments and transactions between banks, enabling the smooth functioning of the global payment system. Banks transfer funds among each other frequently, and Interbank Deposits help efficiently facilitate this transfer of funds. When banks end a day with surplus funds, they can lend these funds to other banks that might be encountering a shortfall. This movement of resources across banks fosters financial interconnectivity, resilience and smooth operation of banking activities.


1. Foreign Exchange Transactions: Currency traders use interbank deposits to facilitate the exchange of different currencies between banks. For example, a US bank which has acquired British pounds through a particular transaction might deposit these pounds into a UK bank. 2. Interbank Lending During Financial Crises: During the 2008 financial crisis some banks had liquidity issues, meaning they didn’t have enough money on-hand to meet their immediate obligations. Other banks, which had excess liquidity, would make interbank deposits to the struggling banks. This type of swift, flexible lending contributed to the stabilization of the financial system during this chaotic period.3. Central Bank Operations: Interbank deposits are also used by central banks to manage the money supply in an economy. For example, if a central bank wants to decrease the amount of money in circulation (and thereby increase interest rates) it might sell securities to commercial banks who pay for them via interbank deposits. This reduces the amount of money the commercial banks have available to lend to customers, therefore reducing the overall money supply.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What are Interbank Deposits?

Interbank Deposits are funds deposited by banks in other banks. They are typically short-term, unsecured loans that banks provide to one another.

Why do banks make interbank deposits?

Banks make interbank deposits mainly to manage their liquidity and meet reserve requirements. They may also use them to lend at higher rates than they receive on the deposits.

Are interbank deposits safe?

Interbank deposits carry a certain level of risk. They are unsecured; meaning if the borrowing bank goes bankrupt, the lending bank might lose its deposit. However, they typically are made between highly reputable banks, which does minimize this risk.

Are interbank deposits only domestic transactions?

No, interbank deposits can be domestic or international. Often, many financial institutions around the globe engage in this activity to balance out their books.

How is the interest rate on interbank deposits determined?

The interest rate on interbank deposits usually fluctuates based on supply and demand in the interbank market. These rates can plus certain standard rates like LIBOR (London Interbank Offered Rate) or other local benchmark rates.

Can individuals participate in interbank deposits?

No, Interbank Deposits are strictly a transaction between two banks or financial institutions. Individual consumers do not participate in these transactions.

How do Interbank Deposits affect the economy?

Interbank deposits play a crucial role in ensuring liquidity within the banking sector. They can influence short-term interest rates, and by extension, influence inflation and other economic conditions.

How do Interbank Deposits impact the financial stability of banks?

The system of Interbank Deposits allows banks to maintain enough liquidity to meet unexpected cash demands. However, if a major bank fails to repay its Interbank Deposits, it could potentially destabilize the entire banking system.

Related Finance Terms

  • Interbank Rate
  • Central Bank
  • Depository Institution
  • Liquidity Management
  • Overnight Loan

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