ATHENS Oct 25 Greek bank deposits dropped
slightly for the fourth straight month in September, a sign that
their increase since the middle of last year has run out of
steam, central bank data showed on Friday.
Businesses and household deposits fell 0.5 percent to 161.35
billion euros ($222.72 billion) from 162.21 billion euros in
August, the Bank of Greece said.
Greek banks lost around 90 billion euros or a third of their
deposit base after the country plunged into a debt crisis in
late 2009, partly due to capital flight on fears of a euro zone
About 17 billion euros returned to the banking system in the
months following a mid-June 2012 election, which led to the
formation of a new government and eased fears that Athens would
leave the single currency.
The inflows helped ease banks' liquidity strains and their
dependence on central bank funding.
But the inflows have dried up since March, when Cyprus was
bailed out at the expense of bank deposit holders and as
austerity-hit households and businesses run down bank accounts
to pay for higher taxes imposed under Greece's international
bailout to plug fiscal shortfalls.