Structured Products

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Some just don't get it

On the 21st of April, a private bank in Switzerland published an advertisement in the NZZ, one of the most read newspapers in the country. In small print below the main message was written in German: "...therefore we do not let ourselves get drawn into speculative transactions and also do not sell structured products." Boy, they didn't get it. In an accident, they would probably be blaming the car instead of the driver - if there were anyone to blame at all. In the advertisement, it sounds as if structured products were the Devil impersonated. What's wrong with structured products? Those I now and structure make perfect sense and are usually safer than the underlying asset they are based on, at least from a risk point of view. They are certainly less speculative than other, more common financial products like options, futures or warrants. That is, perhaps I misunderstood the message and that bank (I'm not going to name it, they are not getting free advertisement here) doesn't take any risk, no stocks, no funds, no commodities. Maybe they just invest their client's money in government bonds; hopefully not Greek ones, hahaha. Seriously, statements as in this advertisement are just dumb; I feel sorry for the tree that was felled to produce the paper and for the wasted ink.