DEFINITION of 'Silent Bank Run'

A situation in which a bank's depositors withdraw funds en masse without physically entering the bank. A silent bank run is much like a normal bank run, except withdrawals are made by customers in the form of electronic fund transfers and wire transfers, rather than going into the bank and withdrawing cash or a bank draft. As banking has become more and more automated, the electronic movement of funds from one institution to another has become more common.

BREAKING DOWN 'Silent Bank Run'

During the 2008 financial crisis, many financial institutions faced silent bank runs, as depositors feared losing their deposits if banks were to collapse. Across America and Europe, particularly in the U.K. and Iceland, silent bank runs drained banks of their reserves, which served to deepen the crisis and force several large institutions to the brink of collapse.

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