How Do Banks Make Money?

Banks make money by lending your money out at interest and by charging you for services provided. When they lend your money they have to balance their objectives of creating as much income as possible for themselves, with their obligation to play it safe and maintain security for that money. They also have to maintain a good liquidity position in case you and all other customers want to draw cash out.

Liquidity and profitability are sometimes opposite positions - one cannot generally have both at once. If you are able to lend your money for long periods then a lot of interest can be earned. However the bank cannot lend so much of that money out that they prevent their customers from having access to their cash when they want it.

Banks therefore run the operation like a businesses because, in fact, that’s what they are - a business. Your business’s product may be a piece of equipment or machinery or clothing or food. The bank’s product is cash, or money. They sell this money in the form of loans and other financial type products. They make their money on the interest and fees they charge on these loans and they pay others for that money. These othe...

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