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It’s Thursday so the banks will open

Theo Ousalotmoney: OK
guys, time to open the bank.

Brancho Tellerous:
Oxi (no) … we have no money.

Theo: Waddya
mean, we have no money? We are a bank?

Tellerous: Yes
sir, but we are a Cypriot Bank.

Theo: So?

Tellerous: That
means we’re broke.

Theo: No we’re
not as we’re not Greek.  We’re Russian.

Tellerous: You
think we’re Russian?

Theo: Sure.  Greek-Russian Cypriots.  It’s like the Church.  Greek, but in Russia.

Tellerous: I think
you are slightly deluded sir.  We is

Theo: European?  Since when?

Tellerous: Since
we joined the European Union.

Theo: We joined
the European Union?

Tellerous: Yes
sir.  Didn’t you notice?

Theo: Not
really.  I thought we were Russian.

Tellerous: Well,
you could be easily mistaken sir.  We
have a lot Russian money.

Theo: Exactly.  A quarter of our bank vault is in Russian

Tellerous: That
does not make us Russian sir.  We is

Theo: Since when?

Tellerous: Since
we joined the euro sir.

Theo: We use the
euro?  I thought we was drachma?

Tellerous: No, we
dropped drachma for euro back in 2008.         

Theo: We is euro?

Tellerous: Yes
sir.  We use the euro.

Theo: So what
does that mean?

Tellerous: It
means we owe the European Central Bank a ton of cash.

Theo: We do?

Tellerous: We do.

Theo: Like how much?

Tellerous: About €5.8 billion.

Theo: How much is that?

Tellorous: About $7.5 billion.

Theo: No, in roubles man, in roubles.

Tellourous: Oh yes. 
Around 230 billion roubles sir.

Theo: Oooooooo.

Tellerous: Although
technically we don’t owe them that much.

Theo: What do you

Tellerous: Well,
that’s how much we will owe them, if they bail us out.

Theo: We is being
bailed out?

Tellerous: Yes, sir.

Theo: Why is we
being bailed out?

Tellerous: Well,
we’re broke.

Theo: But we’s
got lots of Russian money.

Tellerous: Yes
sir, but we owe billions because of Greece.

Theo: But we is
not Greek or Turk or Cypriot … we is Russian.

Tellerous: Ok
sir, if you say so.


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About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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  • Cyprus’s travails should cause us all to reflect on the vulnerability of the modern banking system to technology: whither Theo and his friends without cash?
    And if you want another case study: the Irish suffered Bank strikes in the 1970s – one lasting six months. As I recall they were saved by that luddite old piece of paper called a cheque. Our Irish cousins simply endorsed their cheques to use them for larger transactions – and with a surprisingly low level of defaults once the banks got going again.
    What would happen to a world wholly dependent on NFC, smartphones, internet banking etc etc?

  • Shripad Vaidya

    Simplistic elaboration of complexity. Good one Chris. Really scary for multiple dimensions. I am sure trans-regional impact such as USA, China would complicate the matter further. Can we (as world banking fraternity) do some better jobs for our future generations? (I know it’s expensive learning though)