How To Open A Bank Account Offshore
Last year, Lief hosted his Global Asset Protection and Wealth Summit in Panama City. On day one of the conference, he and I had lunch with banker friends in town. One, with 30 years of experience in the global banking industry, sat down, looked around the table, and said:
“I wish I hadn’t been so right.
“I began telling people that the roof was being lowered 25 years ago. I began warning them and urging them to get their money and their assets out of the United States… to move whatever they could offshore.
“Now, today, the roof is very low indeed and continuing to close in on us. Things are bad… tight… but they’re going to get worse. Today it’s harder than ever and it’s harder all the time to move money out of the States. We are living through the era I predicted years ago…”
As I listened to our banker friend and watched the others around the table all nod their heads slowly in dejected agreement, I thought how strange the conversation might seem to the casual passer-by.
Really, I thought how strange the conversation would have seemed to me not too many years ago. That day, though, I nodded along with everyone else at the table. I’m not paranoid by nature, and I’ve always discounted doomsday predictions, like the one my banker friend made starting two-and-a-half decades ago. I try to keep things in perspective.
During that lunch, I realized how my perspective had shifted. I’m not paranoid, but I am paying attention.
Lief and I do business and have investments in many different countries. Lief manages the administration for all these activities. He is on the front lines and in the trenches, dealing with banks around the world every day. He knows from firsthand experience the challenges, the frustrations, and the restrictions faced today by anyone (but especially by an American) trying to do business, make investments, and move money around the world.
The Ideal First Step For Going Offshore
There is something known as the Five Flags paradigm for going offshore. Banking is one of the Five Flags, one of the opportunities for diversifying your capital, your assets, your investments, and your future overseas. For years, we’ve been recommending banking as an ideal option for anyone just getting started with this go-offshore stuff. It’s the easiest best first step, we’ve long said.
It’s still a great getting-started step, and it’s a necessary piece of the infrastructure you need to build if you want to spend time, do business, or make investments in another country.
However, opening a bank account in another country is nowhere nearly as easy as it used to be, especially if you’re an American. It is still possible and important to hold at least one bank account offshore, but in today’s world you need to be prepared for the process of getting an offshore bank account opened.
Bankers and other industry experts participating in our Banking panel discussion detailed what you need to know to open a bank account in another country… and walked through strategies for doing business, investing, buying real estate, and getting money where you want it to be in today’s complicated banking age.
Banking is one of the Five Flags. The other four are:
With the help of the professionals in the room with us in Panama City for that conference, collectively the A-list of offshore experts, we addressed all of these important agendas in turn.
As one speaker remarked on the topic of diversifying assets offshore:
“Physical gold is about as useful in an end-of-days scenario as my ability to make spreadsheets. You can’t eat gold. It’s the farmers who will rule the world if the banking, credit, and financial industries collapse… as they well could…”