Greek companies and households pulled €7.6 billion out of their bank accounts during the government’s standoff with its international bailout creditors in February, driving deposits down to €140.5 billion — the lowest level in 10 years.
Although the withdrawals were lower than in January, the €20.4 billion pulled out over the two months shows how close Greece came to a full-scale bank run before Athens reached agreement with eurozone authorities to extend its €172 billion bailout into June.
The two-month total, reported by the Bank of Greece on Thursday, is even larger than the €15.9 billion withdrawn by companies and households in May and June 2012, when back-to-back Greek elections led eurozone officials to prepare actively for a Greek exit from the single currency.
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