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LETTERS OF CREDIT: TYPES AND USAGE

Specialist Banking & Management Associates is The Strategic Think Tank and Executive Advisory Services Company on Economic Management, Regional Development and Scientific Research, and serves High Net Worth Individuals & Private Investors, Executives & Managers, Institutional Investors, Company & Project Owners, and Foundation & Funding Groups who are utilizing our global banking expertise for Investment & Loan Funding, Project Finance and individual Investments in direct cooperation with European prime banks prime banks in Europe, Asia and Northern America.

We are Facilitators of Investment, Finance and Trading Programs in direct Cooperation with AAA - rated European Prime Banks, Placement Program Managers and Providers within the international banking system, preferably in Swiss, Germany and Great Britain. Banking Contracts are provided to High Net Worth Clients, whose investments are under their own account name, guaranteed, insured and safely guarded and always under their control during the period contracted.

We are providing World Capital Market & Financial Management Research, Capital Market Services as part of Political & Economic Risk Management, Financial Markets Research on Instruments and Institutions, International Capital Movement and Monetary Cooperation, evaluating Economic Performance & Investment Potential towards competitive and yielding Placements on World Capital Markets.

Our services incorporate Investment Banking, Private Banking, Personal Banking & Wealth Management, Asset & Financial Management, Investment Funding, Project Finance & Loan Funding through the Facilitation of Specialist Banking Contracts for entering the bank secured Investment Programs conducted by European Prime Banks or Money Center Banks preferably in Swiss, Germany and Great Britain in close Cooperation with Placement Program Managers and Providers

- To provide guidance and assistance to principals as private clients and high-net-worth individuals, corporations & institutional investors, banks & funding groups, trusts & foundations, executives & managers, and entrepreneurs through professional excellence according to international banking standards.

- To explore innovative financial solutions and facilitate global investment potential for wealth creation and life quality enhancement by providing global reach and connectivity between capital markets and knowledge driven Investors profiteering from yielding investments.

For entering Investment Programs, please start your request, and in order to meet the requirements, anticipate our Terms & Conditions, which you find as link below or via INDEX.

The issuance of bank credit instruments dates back to the early days of banking when private, wealthy individuals used their capital to support various trade ventures. Promissory Notes, Bills of Exchange, Bankers Acceptances and Letters of Credit have all been part of daily bank business for many years. There are three types of Letters of Credit that are issued daily; 1) Documentary Letters of Credit 2) Standby Letters of Credit and 3) Unconditional Letters of Credit or Surety Guarantees.

The issuance of a Letter of Credit usually takes place when a bank customer (Buyer) wishes to buy or acquire goods or services from a third party (Seller). The Buyer will cause his bank to issue a Letter of Credit, which “guarantees” payment to the Seller via the Seller’s bank conditional against certain documentary requirements. When the Seller, via his bank, presents certain documents to the Buyer’s bank, the payment will be made. These documentary requirements vary from transaction to transaction, however the normal type of documents are usually comprised of the following:

Invoice form Seller (usually in triplicate) Bill of Lading (from the shipper) Certificate of Origin (from the Seller) Insurance documents (to cover goods in transit) Export certificates (if goods are for export) Transfer of Ownership (from the Seller)

These documents effectively “guarantee” that the goods were “sold” and are “en route” to the Buyer. The Buyer is secure in the fact that he has “bought” the items or services and the Seller is secure that the Letter of Credit, which was delivered to him prior to the loading or release of the goods, will “guarantee” payment if he complies with the terms of the Letter of Credit. This type of transaction takes place every day throughout the world, in every jurisdiction and without any fear that the issuing bank will “honor” its obligation, providing that the bank is of an acceptable stature, usually A to AAA credit rated (Standard & Poor’s).

The Letter of Credit is issued in a way that has been recognized by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and is subject to the Uniform Rules of Collection for Documentary Credits (ICC 400/500). This type of instrument is normally called a Documentary Letter of Credit (DLC) and is always trade transaction related, with an underlying sale of goods or services between the applicant (Buyer) and the beneficiary (Seller).

During the evolution of the trade related Letters of Credit, a number of institutions began to issue Standby Letters of Credit (SLC). A conventional Standby Letter of Credit, like a conventional Letter of Credit, is an irrevocable obligation in the form of a Letter of Credit issued by a bank on behalf of its customer. These credit instruments were effectively a surety or guarantee that if the applicant (Buyer) failed to pay or perform under the terms of a transaction, the bank would take over the liability and pay the beneficiary (Seller). They did not have to be issued for a particular transaction (although they could be), but rather they were usually used to “standby” after issuance, waiting to secure the transaction when it took place. In the United States, banks are prohibited by regulation from providing formal guarantees and instead offer these instruments as a functional equivalent of a guarantee. An SLC can be primary (direct draw on the bank) or secondary (available in the event of default by the customer to pay the underlying obligation).

As these Standby Letters of Credit were effectively contingent liabilities based upon the potential formal default or technical default of the applicant, they are held “off-balance sheet” in respect to the bank’s accounting practices. During the period when SLC’s were being evolved and used, the banks and their customers began to see the profitable situation created by the “off-balance sheet” positioning of the instruments. In real terms, the holding of the Standby Letters of Credit was also considered a “contingent” liability and, as such, was held off-balance sheet, a less regulated accounting treatment. Due to constraints being imposed on the banks by government regulatory bodies, the use of these “off-balance sheet” items as a financial tool to effectively adjust the capital/asset ratios of the banks was seen to be a prudent and profitable method of staying within the regulations and yet achieving the desired capital ratios.

At the request of the central bank Governors of the Group of Ten countries a Study Group was established in early 1985 to examine innovations in, or affecting, the conduct of international banking. The Study Group carried out extensive discussions with international commercial and investment banks that were the most active in the market for the main new financial instruments. The purposes were both to improve central bank knowledge of those instruments and their markets as the situation existed in the second half of 1985. Further, the discussions provided a foundation for considering the financial instruments implications for the stability and functioning of the international financial institutions and markets, for monetary policy, and for banks’ financial reporting and statistical reporting of international financial development projects. Alongside this work, the Basle Supervisors’ Committee has undertaken a study of the prudential aspects of banking innovations and a report on the management of banks’ off-balance sheet exposures and their supervisory implications was published by that Committee and the Bank for International Settlements in March 1986.

The growth of these instruments can be attributed generally to the same factors affecting the trend towards securitization, with two additional influences. Firstly, bankers have been attracted to off-balance sheet business because of constraints imposed on their balance sheets, notably regulatory pressure to improve capital ratios, and because they offer a way to improve the rate of return earned on assets. Secondly, for similar reasons, banks have sought ways to hedge interest rate exposure without inflating balance sheets, as would occur with the use of the interbank market.


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MISSION Shaping the World, where Intellectual Strength and Human Quality, Asset and Value Creation, and Achievements are Ultimate Goals of an Open Mind capitalizing on Imaginative Thinking and Methods, Knowledge and Leadership for meeting Clients’ Financial Target, and leveraging Visions and enlightening Ideas towards a World as yielding Market Place enhancing human conditions and live quality. _____________________________________________________________________________

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