Panama Draws Regional Cash

Jul 1, 2008

Panama is developing as a regional money center, drawing the majority of flow from politically unstable countries. Locals are also generating significant deposits.


by Andy Webb-Vidal

Panama may be barely an eighth of the size of Venezuela, but it has a welcoming investment environment and bright economic prospects. This contrasts markedly with the worsening business and political climate in some parts of LatAm, making Panama a magnet for cash fleeing for more stable havens.

According to Panama’s Banking Superintendent, deposits from sources in Venezuela, including banks, surged from the $811 million in 2006 to $1.32 billion at end of 2007, a hike of 63%. This is partly driven by rising numbers of mostly wealthy Venezuelans migrating to Panama.


“Many people prefer Panama over the US for a number of reasons, chief among them is the question of visas,” says Miguel Octavio, director of BBO Servicios Financieros, a brokerage in Caracas. “Culturally it’s more like Venezuela, and of course Panama has the US dollar, so it has received lots of attention...

To continue reading please take a free trial, subscribe or login below.


Already have an account?

Subscribe

Subscribe now for unlimited access to all current and archive news, data and market analysis. 

Subscribe

Free trial

Take a free two-week trial now for the latest news, data and market analysis.

Free Trial

LatinFinance Events

Poll

Are populist governments like Venezuela & Argentina turning pragmatic?

Vote    




“The crisis has been a setback for reserve diversification."

Jan Dehn, Ashmore Investment Management