BUSINESS

Strategic defaulters want debt forgiveness

DIMITRA MANIFAVA

TAGS: Banking

Almost 94 percent of borrowers in Greece believe that when a bank issues a loan it takes the risk of not getting all the money back, while just 6.3 percent consider the nonpayment of dues a breach of agreement with the bank, according to a study by the ALBA Graduate Business School.

The report served to investigate the mentality of strategic defaulters in Greece. Asked whether they were aware of the loan arrangement programs the banks offer, 52.6 percent of apparently deliberate defaulters stated they were not. By contrast, only 18.1 percent of borrowers who were not considered strategic defaulters said they were unaware of such programs.

Of the 396 people polled, 26 percent said they had overdue debts, of whom almost one in five (19 percent) were deemed by the team who conducted the survey to be “likely strategic defaulters.”

Almost three-quarters of strategic defaulters (72.7 percent) said they believe the existing debt settlement programs do not cover borrowers’ needs, a view shared by just 36.1 percent of non-strategic defaulters.

As the researchers pointed out, “behind this difference in views there may be the desire of strategic defaulters for more drastic solutions such as debt forgiveness.”

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