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BANGKOK 24 January 2019 12:12
Chou Anou

Does anyone invest with Citibank Thailand?

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So, I've been thinking about this a lot lately, since I'll be retiring to Thailand in 7-8 years.

 

I think it's pretty much inevitable that the requirement for the Retirement Extension will soon be 1 million baht in a Thai bank account. I see that 1 million happens to be the minimum for foreigners to open an account with Citibank Thailand, and that minimum includes investments with them.

 

Of course, only a fool would keep 1 million baht in a bank account without having it "work" for them as an investment...and if that would enable me to stay in Thailand in a relatively hassle-free manner, I can handle it. But my question is this: do any farang actually invest with Citibank Thailand? And if so, just how bad is it? I do all my investing in the US with Charles Schwab and (to a lesser extent) Fidelity. In the US, Citibank's investment "services" are utter crap, rife with all sorts of fees that one does not encounter with Schwab and Fidelity. I can't imagine that Citibank Thailand investing is any better--likely, much worse--but what I'm wondering is, how bad is it? What are the options for ETFs, mutual funds, etc.? Can one at least get a meager return on one's 1 million investment?

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Citibank seem to pay at best around 1% for time deposits, with many of their accounts paying less. You can get significantly more from other banks here. One simple solution might be the Krungsri MTD account https://www.krungsri.com/bank/en/PersonalBanking/DepositProducts/SavingsDeposit/MeeTaeDaiSavings.html which pays 1.3% with instant access. I get 1.8% for my time deposit with CIMB.

All are acceptable for deposits for a retirement extension. Investments like ETFs, shares or bonds are not acceptable.


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I think the primary reason Citibank is in Thailand is to provide services to their multinational corporate customers. I cant speak to their personal banking, but for business, their fees are (in my opinion) the highest in the country.

 

I do have a Citibank visa, but only because when we switched from Kasikorn to Citibank at work they came in and signed up everyone that wanted one.

 

I believe that Thailand is like the US in that the investment products the banks push are crap.

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