Banks street in Downtown Beirut. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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Lebanese banks are poised to increase interest rates on dollar deposits gradually after the U.S. Federal Reserve said it is contemplating raising rates three more times in 2017 .It is unlikely that most banks will raise the interest rates on the dollar spontaneously, instead preferring to wait until the Federal Reserve progressively increases these rates in the following years.Wazni said that some Lebanese banks are now offering 6 to 6.5 percent interest on dollar deposits that exceed $1 million.A number of leading banks have even offered 20 percent profit up front for any person or company that deposits $10 million or more for at least a three-year period.According to financial circles, a leading bank has offered between 10 percent to 20 percent instant profit in the form of Lebanese pounds and 5 percent annual interest on a $10 million or more deposit.Makram Sader, the secretary-general of the Association of Banks in Lebanon, said that raising the interest rates on the dollar depends on the policy of each bank.
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