Bank Secrecy

In most countries it is one of the main aspects of the relationship between banker and customer. Normally, staff members are required to sign a declaration of secrecy as regards the business of the bank and affairs of the customer.

In some countries with strict banking traditions, a specific legislation makes breaches of bank secrecy subject to criminal law sanctions. However, even in the legislation of these countries there are special cases where the duty of banking secrecy may be discharged, for example, in the cases of money laundering and drug traffic.

Most tax treaties contain the clause of exchange of information which enables the tax administration of one country to obtain information regarding bank accounts which its residents have in the other country.

Numbered accounts are often used with purpose to limit the number of persons knowing the identity of the customer.

Bearer Bond

This is the bond issued in bearer form, and not registered in a specific owner's name. The ownership is determined by actual physical possession.

Bearer Shares

Shares which are transferable only by delivery of the certificate and do not display a shareholder's name. For this reason, the ownership is granted to any individual who is in actual possession of share certificate(s).

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