ECONOMY

Greek bank deposits plunge to lowest point since 2005

Greek bank deposits plunged the most since the country joined the euro area as renewed political instability led savers to pull their money.

Deposits held by households and businesses fell 7.7 percent in January to 148 billion euros, their lowest level since August 2005, according to Bank of Greece data.

Combined, there was a drop of more than 16 billion euros in December and January.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was elected late last month on a pledge to write down a large part of the country’s bailout debt and roll back austerity measures linked to its bailout.

He’s since backed down to reach a deal with creditors this week, and Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said some deposits have returned since that accord.

While the deposit outflow continued into February, Varoufakis said in a Bloomberg Television interview on Wednesday that more than 700 million euros of that has returned since the agreement.

[Bloomberg]