ATHENS – Fearful of a Greek default and Eurozone exit, Greek bank customers withdrew 300 million euros ($327.56 million) on May 26 as a quiet run on the institutions is underway.
Banking officials reported the outflow and said it was three times higher than the 100 million euros yanked out the previous day, but they said while it’s disturbing there’s no reason for alarm yet, Kathimerini said.
The European Central Bank (ECB), one of the country’s lenders, is stepping in with more Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) to keep the banks solvent.
On May 27 the ECB board is expected to decide on a fresh extension of the ELA, which the previous week was 200 million euros ($218.34 million), bringing the total given Greek banks some 80.2 billion euros ($87.55 billion).
The coalition government led by Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras has said it would not impose capital controls nor confiscate bank accounts, fears that have driven the spike in withdrawals.
The country is running out of money fast and locked in stalled talks with the troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB) that is holding back a 7.2-billion euro ($7.86 billion) installment until more reforms are imposed.
Greece has to pay the IMF 300 million euros ($327.54 million) and the government said it may not be able to do so unless the blocked aid is released so it can use the loans to pay the previous loans.