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Economic development and the stability of the infrastructure in Asia are two of the major focus areas for the Singaporean government. Thankfully, their banking policies are of such a nature that DBS Bank creates room for this to take place. Not only is this the biggest bank in Singapore, but in Asia as well. DBS Bank – or the Development Bank of Singapore – fosters deep relationships with businesses to ensure that the development of the nation is always top of mind. This review has a look at the inner workings of Asia’s banking sweetheart and how it compares with banks from around the world.

Discover how DBS Bank compares to one of its global competitors, National Bank of Abu Dhabi.

History of DBS Bank

Singapore’s history is rich and filled with tales of silk and spice, magical kingdoms and impressive dynastys. However, the Singapore of today can more or less be traced back to the sixties when modernization was a key element in the development of the nation. This happened shortly after Singapore was expelled from Malaysia for rebelling against the government. The journey to the Singapore of today is filled with hard work and a nation’s tenacity.

Unemployment and housing crisis were not enough to keep this nation in the doldrums of despair. Towards the end of the sixties, DBS Bank was established. The bank partnered with government to focus on the upliftment of manufacturing, public housing estates, and public education.

It took about two decades for the nation to get back on its feet. By the nineties, it was known as one of the world’s most prosperous nations. The severing of the tie between Singapore and Malaysia proved to play in Singapore’s advantage.

Access to DBS Bank

DBS Bank
Screenshot of DBS Bank Branch Network

Online Banking

DBS Bank provides the safest banking in the entire Asia, according to its website. Customers can perform many of their transactions on the online portals.

A bank that enjoys 100% online presence with no need for customers to set foot in a branch, is Ally Bank.

Branches

There are over 280 branches across Asia, which makes it the largest bank in Singapore and Southeast Asia.

DBS Bank Personal Banking Product Offering

DBS Bank
Screenshot of Personal Banking Home Page DBS Bank

Savings Accounts

DBS Bank has an impressive savings range which also happens to have its own review.

DBS eMySavings Account

This savings account provides clients with a hassle-free solution towards those savings goals.

  • The account provides special interest rates.
  • Furthermore, there is a preset monthly savings amount that is convenient for the client.
  • Also, this date and amount can be changed.
  • Finally, the account is accessible immediately through ATM, iBanking and the digibank app.

DBS Multi-Currency Autosave

This is the ideal savings vehicle for those who receive their funds from various sources of income.

  • First of all, there are easy conversions from one currency to another.
  • Customers have the ability to remit, withdraw, or receive foreign currency funds directly from this account. Furthermore, this allows customers to save on foreign exchanges.
  • Also, there are no fees charged for foreign currency withdrawals at the bank.
  • Finally, the account is opened in a single appointment and one account number is used for all 13 currencies.

Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit

An investment account suitable for those who deal in foreign currencies.

  • There is a choice of 9 foreign currencies. Customers also have the benefit of the various interest rates for the different currencies.
  • Also, customers choose whether to save for one month to a year.

Singapore Dollar Fixed Deposit

Customers are assured of attractive interest rates and security of funds.

  • The fixed deposit account starts with a minimum balance to get it going.
  • Furthermore, customers have the choice of the tenor of the investment.
  • This investment can be used as collateral for credit facilities.

DBS Premier Income Account

This is the ideal option for those who wish to earn an income from their savings. The account provides income at the intervals specified by the client.

  • Clients choose a term between 6 and 60 months.
  • Also, deposits from a certain amount receive higher interest.
  • Furthermore, the account provides the option to automatically renew after maturity.
  • There are preferential rates for foreign currency notes.
  • Finally, this account can be used as collateral for an overdraft facility.

Investments

Unit Trust

Customers can pool their funds with other investors in collective funds. This allows customers to have access to a wider range of assets. Furthermore, this lowers the risk. Some of the other benefits include:

  • A fairly low opening deposit
  • Customers also experience professional management
  • Finally, there is a 7-day review period

Regular Savings Plan

A small initial deposit to allow customers to invest in unit trust. Furthermore, this is the ideal way to start an investment portfolio.

  • Customers will enjoy the benefits of dollar-cost-averaging.
  • Also, the effect of compound interest is felt.
  • Finally, customers retain control of the monthly investment amounts.

Online Cash Account

Access to convenient trade settlement. This is done through linking the trading account to the DBS/POSB account via GIRO or EPS.

  • A single account for transactions in various markets.
  • Also the option to link DBS/POSB accounts for convenient trade settlements.
  • Finally, convenient FX conversion service to facilitate trade settlement in foreign currencies.

Young Investor Account

An account specifically designed for those between the ages of eighteen and twenty.

  • The opportunity the open an account through a reputable brokerage.
  • Also the opportunity to learn the basics of investments.

DBSV mTrading

A trading platform that works through mobile devices.

  • The chance to trade with a single account. This is in Singapore, Hong Kong, United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Japan stock markets
  • Real-time prices from SGX, HKEx, NYSE, NASDAQ, AMEX, and TSX
  • Also, the opportunity to view favorite stocks and portfolios

Online Cash Upfront Account

A trading account that uses an online banking interface.

  • Competitive commission rates or a minimum amount for all Singapore trades.
  • Also, hassle-free settlement through the various accounts.
  • Furthermore, flexibility in managing trading limits.
  • Finally, online fund withdrawals.

Singapore Savings Bonds

Safe and flexible investment options to maintain the value of the nest egg.

  • The opportunity to earn step-up interest on savings.
  • Helps diversify risks and achieve efficient portfolios.

Currency Linked Investments

This account provides customers with the option to potentially earn an enhanced yield on their principal amount.

  • First of all, this type of account is tailored to the customer’s choice of currency pairs.
  • Also, customers choose the strike rate and tenor. This can be from one week to six months.
  • Finally, the opportunity to earn potentially higher returns on the principal amount invested.

Foreign Currency Fixed Deposit

The opportunity to place funds in a fixed deposit account. Furthermore, this account provides the means to earn foreign exchange gains on top of earned interest.

  • The opportunity to choose from 10 foreign currencies: AUD, CAD, CHF, EUR, GBP, HKD, CNH, and USD
  • Also, customers can pick a tenor from one month to a year.
  • Finally, the chance to gain exposure in foreign currency.

Structured Deposits

The use of financial instruments. These include equities, interest rates, market indices, fixed income instruments, or a combination of these.

  • Customers have the option of the tenor. Furthermore, the recommended period is medium to long term.
  • A tranche concept that is only available during the specified offer period.
  • Also, a return of principal policy exists in certain circumstances.
  • Finally, there are variable payouts linked to the performance of the underlying financial instrument.

Take a look at a full review done on the insurance products of DBS Bank.

DBS Bank
Screenshots of Some DBS Bank Loan Options

Home Loans

To finance the purchase of that dream home, customers often need a little help from a financial institution. This is where a home loan comes in. We also did a full review on the mortgage options of DBS Bank.

Buying Private Property

With a home loan option to suit their needs, customers will have the opportunity to live in their dream property. Some of the features of this type of loan includes:

  • Customers have access to transparent interest rates
  • Also, there is the option to earn additional interest on savings through the BDS Multiplier Program
  • Furthermore, customers can choose between the fixed rate of floating rate package
  • Customers can choose between a completed property or a building under construction

Refinancing a Private Property Loan

The equity that is available on a property is often a great source of cash for those who wish to use it. This money can be used for a number of things, including the purchase of pricey items.

  • Customers will have access to a wide variety of home loan options
  • Furthermore, the packages offer transparent rates
  • Also, customers will earn additional interest on their savings through the BDS Multiplier Programme
  • Customers can choose between a fixed rate or floating rate package

Buying an HBD Flat

Suitable options for those who wish to buy a build-to-order or resale flat.

  • Customers will benefit from loan rates that are lower than HDB. Furthermore, these lower rates are guaranteed
  • Also, customers will enjoy rate transparency
  • The DBS Multiplier Programme ensures that customers earn additional interest on their savings
  • Finally, there is the option between the floating or fixed rate packages

Refinance an HBD Loan

These loans allow access to loan amounts already paid off.

  • Customers will enjoy concessionary rates that are lower than HDB. Furthermore, the lower rates are guaranteed
  • The packages provide customers with transparent interest rates
  • Also, through the DBS Multiplier Programme customers will enjoy additional interest on their savings
  • Finally, there is the option between the floating or fixed rate packages

Renovation Loan

When the paint peels or the colors seem a little dim, it’s time for a renovation. To have this kind of cash on hand isn’t always possible, which is why a renovation loan is a good option.

  • Customers will enjoy a flat interest rate
  • Furthermore, they have the option of choosing a term anywhere between one and five years
  • Also, the loan is structured according to affordability
  • Finally, customers enjoy peace of mind as there is comprehensive insurance

Personal Loans

DBS Personal Loan

Customers enjoy fixed interest rates and monthly installments.

  • These loans provide flexibility for those who wish to take on personal projects
  • Furthermore, cash disbursement takes place straight away upon approval

DBS Cashline

This type of loan provides customers with an emergency cashline for those rainy days.

  • Interest only accumulates once the funds are accessed
  • Also, customers have quick access to the funds

Cashline Balance Transfer

The ideal solution for those who wish to consolidate their loans.

  • Customers enjoy 0% for up to 12 months
  • Furthermore, this loan type provides flexible repayment options

Car Loans

Customers who wish to purchase a car and don’t have enough savings to cover the cost can apply for a loan.

  • Finance terms of one to seven years
  • Furthermore, the loan amount is pegged to the Open Market Value (OMW)
  • Also, loans are available to vehicles under ten years

Student Loans

Study Loans

This type of loan is suitable for those who wish to study through a university or polytechnic institution. Furthermore, these loans provide students with extra funds while they are studying.

Tuition Fee Loan

A 0% interest loan that is funded by the government. Furthermore, these loans are offered by institutions and administered by DBS Bank.

Computer Loan

A suitable option for students who need to purchase laptops for their studies.

Secured Financing

DBS Share Financing

Customers make use of a loan to finance their share investments. This allows better flexibility and cash management.

Assetline

A secured loan, usually as an overdraft, to finance financial needs. Also, these loans are often secured by funds in a fixed deposit. These types of loans provide:

  • Flexible cash management
  • Easy access
  • Flexible repayment

Loan option at DBS Bank received a surprising rating on its review.

DBS Bank SME Banking Product Offering

DBS Bank
Screenshot of SME Banking Home Page DBS Bank

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) often have different needs to those of individuals. This is why their banking products should reflect these differences. Furthermore, customers have access to products that will allow them to grow their businesses from good to amazing with the right mixture.

Current Accounts

Digital Business Account

A business account has a few more bells and whistles, but it doesn’t mean it should be difficult to use. Furthermore, the benefits of digital banking extend far beyond just saving on bank fees.

  • Customers don’t have to maintain a minimum balance. Furthermore, they don’t have to ever worry about a fall-below fee.
  • This account provides access to exclusive corporate online and mobile banking apps.
  • Also, the account comes with a free debit card. Furthermore, there is no annual fee and a small cash rebate.
  • Finally, the account is simple to open and can be done online.

Virtual Account

Customers who need to do many recons for their clients will find this to be a simple solution. Each customer will receive an account number which links back to the customer’s account.

  • First of all, customers will save time and lower their administration costs.
  • Also, they can create instant VAs.
  • Finally, there are summary accounts and other added benefits.

Trade

Letter of Credit Issuance

This allows customers to create assurance with their suppliers that the payment is secured. Furthermore, the letter of credit is issued at the customer’s request. Also, DBS Bank checks that the documents are in compliance with the Letter of Credit terms. Finally, once all is in place, these are certified and payment is made.

Online Import Letter of Credit

This type of LC allows customers to save time by skipping the branch. Furthermore, customers enjoy fast issuance as the LC is issued within two business days. Finally, customers enjoy competitive rates and even a discount off processing fees. The discount is only applicable when customers apply online.

Loans

SME Working Capital Loan

This type of loan is ideal for those who require a low to medium loan and don’t have collateral for it. Furthermore, customers can choose a repayment term of up to five years.

DBS Business Property Loan

This loan provides more than just the funds needed to secure a property. It also provides zero fees. Furthermore, customers will enjoy two years’ fire insurance free. Customers can choose between a fixed or floating loan. Finally, this loan can be applied for online.

Foreign Exchange

DealOnline

The opportunity to book FX transactions online. Furthermore, this protects profit margins and hedges FX exposure. Also, customers can deal in FX transactions in more than 40 currency pairs. Finally, the offer includes:

  • FX Value Today
  • Value Tomorrow
  • Spot
  • Forward and
  • Time Option Forward

FX Value Today

This product allows customers to convert their currencies immediately.

Working Capital Advisory

This is a service that allows businesses to unlock pockets of working capital in their businesses. This is also the ideal tool for businesses to use when they consider finance to improve cash flow. Furthermore, through the diagnostics, customers can determine inefficiencies in their businesses.

Commercial General Insurance

This type of insurance provides cover for assets, operations, and people. Furthermore, it covers unexpected risks. This allows customers to focus on growing their businesses.

DBS Bank Corporate Banking Product Offering

DBS Bank
Screenshot of Corporate Banking Home Page DBS Bank

Industry Specialization

Customers have the opportunity to work with industry experts for the right advice. There are relationship managers, product specialists, and industry experts to take care of corporate clients. Some of the industries covered, include:

  • Commodities
  • Energy, Chemicals, and Infrastructure
  • Financial Institutions
  • Real Estate
  • Shipping, Aviation, and Transportation
  • Also, Telecommunications, Media, and Technology and
  • Multi-Industry

Cash Solutions

Cash and Accounts

Business Account

This allows customers to manage their finance. Furthermore, this is done easily and conveniently.

DBS Educator Account

This account is suitable for those who provide work for educators.

Fixed Deposit Account

Investment option that provides a fixed rate on a fixed term.

RMB Trade Settlement Account

The perfect solution for those trading with Chinese businesses.

Notional Pooling

The chance to grow the group’s cash balance and reduce loan costs.

Cash Concentration

An option that provides the automated movement of funds.

Escrow Services

Allows the opportunity to mitigate counterparty risk. Furthermore, it safeguards funds.

Payments

Domestic Funds Transfers

Customers will have access to a convenient payment system. Also, it’s ideal for domestic transfers. These options include:

  • FAST Payment
  • GIRO Payroll
  • GIRO Payment
  • Account Transfer
  • Also MAS Electronic Payment System (MEPS) and
  • Cheque Express

Cross-Border Funds Transfers

International payments that are simple and effective.

  • DBS Priority Pay
  • Telegraphic Transfers and
  • Demand Drafts

Collections

Corporate collections are essential to ensure the business continues to run. Furthermore, the right solution will maintain a happy customer base.

Cash and Cheque

The bank offers customers deposit bags, cash collection services, and retail and wholesale lockboxes.

Incoming Funds

Customers will have access to the funds through telegraphic transfers and MAS Electronic Payment System (MEPS).

Electronic Collections and Bill Payments

These include online direct debit authorization, GIRO collection, bill payment, and d2Pay (direct debit payment).

Virtual Account

This is a simple way to allow the reconciliation of collections.

Credit Card Acceptance

This is the opportunity to accept payments from customers who prefer to pay with card. Also, those who have retail stores can use the credit card acceptance for retail businesses. Furthermore, there is also the option to use credit card acceptance for e-commerce businesses.

Electronic Banking

There are various electronic banking options to choose from:

  • Online Banking – IDEAL TM0
  • IDEAL TM Connect
  • DBS IDEAL TM Connect for SWIFT
  • Also Mobile Banking – DBS IDEAL TM Mobile App and
  • IDEAL TM eReports

Insurance

Customers have various options for all their insurance needs. Apart from commercial general insurance, customers also have access to life insurance. Furthermore, universal life insurance is the ideal option for protection against to loss of key personnel.

Business Cards

DBS Purchasing Card

Provide buyers with a simple and effective means to make payment.

DBS Corporate Charge Card

A structured means to control and manage employee spend. Furthermore, it requires a full balance payment at the close of the statement cycle.

DBS Virtual Card

Suitable for those who need to travel often.

Trade

Import Services

There are a variety of options that streamline the import process. These include

  • Letter of Credit Issuance
  • Import Financing
  • Also Inward Bill Collection (DA/DP) and
  • Shipping Guarantee/Air Waybill Endorsement

Export Services

With this option, customers can receive their payments fairly quickly. Furthermore, customers have a variety of options to choose from.

  • Letter of Credit Advising
  • LC Confirmation
  • Also, LC Negotiation/Discounting
  • Transferable Letter of Credit
  • Outward Bill Collection (DA/DP)
  • Export Bill Financing Under Documentary Collection (DA/DP)
  • Also, Export Pre-Shipment Financing and
  • Finally, Export Open Account Post-Shipment Financing

Other Trade Products

Some additional services are sometimes needed to get the job done.

  • Banker’s Guarantee/Standby letter of Credit
  • Accounts Receivable Purchase
  • Supply-Chain Financing
  • Also Trade Document Counters and
  • Trade Autofax

Financing

Trade Financing

As previously discussed

Structured Financing

This is essential for the growth of the business. It also allows the business to indirectly build its asset book.

  • Real Estate Financing
  • Project Financing
  • Also, Acquisition Financing and
  • Trade and Commodities Financing

Asset Finance

First of all, this type of finance is the direct finance of assets. This allows the business to grow, furthermore, it often allows certain tax advantages. In some cases, it also provides substantial savings to a rental option.

  • Equipment financing and
  • Vessel financing

Treasury

Foreign Exchange

Online FX Trading – DealOnline

The chance to book FX transactions anywhere. Furthermore, this is done through DBS Bank’s world-class forex platform.

FX

The chance to hedge currency risk.

Derivatives

Customers will have access to a variety of derivative products. Furthermore, this is branded Asia’s best derivatives house.

  • FX Derivatives
  • Derivatives Clearing and Execution
  • Interest Rate Derivatives
  • Also, Commodity Derivatives and
  • Equity Derivatives

Other Services

  • Fixed Income
  • Structured Debt
  • Also, RMB Solutions and
  • Securities and Fiduciary Services

Advisory

Capital Markets

This allows customers to raise funds through the global markets. Furthermore, there are different options to choose from.

  • Real estate investment trusts and business trusts
  • Also, equity capital markets and
  • Debt capital markets and fixed income

Strategic Advisory

This option allows customers to have access to deal making and other strategic services.

Working Capital Advisory

Working capital is fundamental to the success of a business. DBS Bank provides working capital advisory and insights. Furthermore, case studies form part of the insights.

Review of DBS Bank

Customer Satisfaction

There aren’t many publications that detail the fall and rise of DBS Bank, however, some articles detail this banking phenomenon. Also, from being one of the worst banks where customers service was concerned, the bank slowly made its way back up the ranks to claim the top spot.

Forbes

An article on the Forbes website titled How DBS Bank Became The Best Digital Bank In The World By Becoming Invisible explored the bank’s strange journey. Also, it relies on diversification and going back to the basics of service delivery to do this. Innovative digital channels allow customers to spend less time in banks. Furthermore, the new system at the bank eliminates waste. Finally, this waste is the time wasted by customers in the bank.

Glassdoor

DBS Bank
Screenshot of DBS Bank Review by Glassdoor

Although there is a lack of ratings from customers, there are enough ratings from staff to make up for it. Also, DBS Bank receives a fairly adequate rating of 3.7 of 5 from its employees. Furthermore, 71% of the staff would recommend the bank to a friend and 92% of staff approve of the CEO.

Financial Stability Rating

Moody’s and Fitch rated both DBS Group Holdings and DBS Bank as outlook stable.

Security of Funds

The bank prescribes to the Insurance and Policy Owners’ Protection Schemes Act 2011. Furthermore, the deposits are insured by the Singapore Deposit Corporation up to the specified limit determined by law.

Review of DSB Bank by Critical Reviews – 9 of 10

This is one of the simplest banks to navigate. All the information is where it should be and the bank is upfront with all the crucial information. Customers don’t need to lumber about to figure out how the accounts work. Furthermore, customers can perform all their functions online.

In terms of the willingness to bank with DSB Bank, customers have that added security of the deposit insurance. Also, this is the most secure online bank in Asia. The bank managed to pull up its socks and change the things that customers didn’t like or appreciate about the bank. Furthermore, they listened to their customers and are now reaping the rewards. Finally, the only aspect that brought this rating down a bit, was the fact that the bank doesn’t have much information on the current accounts for individuals. In all other aspects, the bank is close to perfect.

Compare this review to a full review done on Wells Fargo.

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