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“Bank run” under Capital Controls: Greeks withdraw €2.5bn in 45 days

Delays in the talks between Greece and its lenders have brought back the ghost of Grexit.  The grave disagreement between the International Monetary Fund and the European lenders, Grexit bombshell flying around and Greece’s reluctance to accept additional austerity measures have increase uncertainty among citizens – for one more time.

And what do citizens do when they feel political and economical insecurity? The run to banks and withdraw deposits.

2.5 billion euros left Greek banks in the last 45 days. And this despite the capital controls that allow Greeks to withdraw a maximum of just 1,800 euro per month.

However, in better situation are those who brought back cash to the banks. Cash that was largely withdrawn before the capital controls were imposed in July 2015 as a result of a major bank run from November 2014 until end of June 2015. Those who pulled the cash from under the mattress and brought it to bank are allowed to withdraw money above the 1800-euro cap.

According to newspaper Eidiseis, the cash withdrawal in the last 45 days has set bankers in alert.

In addition to cash withdrawals, business loans and mortgage, amounting a total of 500 million euros, turned red. A sign that the delay in the conclusion of the second review has increased uncertainty among the Greeks, as the daily notes.

Speaking to the daily, sources from the Union of Greek Banks said that “time is not working in our favor.”

They stressed that the government and the lenders should reach a compromise.

Beginning of February, Greek websites for economic news had reported that more than one billion euros was withdrawn in January 2017.

According to a report of November 2015, more than 120 billion euros left the Greek banks during the years of the crisis. 45 billion euro left the banks during November 2014 – 2015. Eighty percent of this amount, that is some €36 billion are been kept in homes, company safes or in bank lockers.

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