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FRANKFURT, April 29 Private-sector deposits in
Cypriot banks rose slightly in March, the first monthly increase
since November, while deposits in other southern European
countries hit by the euro zone debt crisis remained relatively
stable, ECB data showed.
Big account holders in Cyprus's two largest lenders were
forced to take a hit as part of an international bailout for
Cyprus last year and private sector deposits at all banks on the
island had been broadly declining since June 2012.
In March, private-sector deposits at Cypriot banks rose by
0.5 percent to 34.6 billion euros ($47.90 billion) from the
previous month, European Central Bank data showed on Tuesday.
The deposits are about 32 percent below their peak of 50.5
billion euros in May 2012.
Banks in the euro zone member state were shut for nearly two
weeks last March after Cyprus agreed a 10-billion-euro bailout
under which major depositors had to pay part of the cost of the
rescue. Capital controls are still in place, with limits on how
much people can transfer from their accounts, although Cyprus is
gradually easing the restrictions.
In Italy, private-sector deposits rose by 0.9 percent in
March and they rose by 1.0 percent in Greece and by 0.2 percent
in Portugal, the ECB data showed.
Monthly fluctuations in the figures are common, though sharp
consecutive drops in countries with stable banking systems are
The data are not seasonally adjusted and differ slightly
from national central bank figures. They exclude deposits from
central government and banks.
($1 = 0.7223 euros)
(Reporting by Eva Taylor; Editing by Susan Fenton)