In 2013 Belgians deposited a thumping 11 billion euros on savings accounts. 8 billion was deposited on accounts at one of the four big high-street banks: BNP Paribas Fortis, KBC, Belfius and ING.
The amount deposited with the big four is down 3 billion on the year. This is being linked to Belgians' discovery of online banking. Financial expert Pascal Paepen says that online banks and other operators often offer more interest than the high-street banks.
Moreover, many Belgians are fed up with conventional savings accounts that with interest rates at an historic low offer little return.
Somewhat out of character Belgian savers are now prepared to take a little more risk and are showing more interest in investment funds, corporate bonds and life insurance products. Belgian banks believe that this trend will continue, also in 2014. Though it could easily be wishful thinking, many analysts are banking on an end to the economic gloom and an upsurge in the economy.