EZ Sets Emergency Summit on Greece

Euro zone leaders will hold an emergency summit on Monday to try to avert a Greek default after bank withdrawals accelerated and government revenue slumped as Athens and its international creditors remain deadlocked over a debt deal.  Finance ministers of the 19-nation currency bloc failed to make any breakthrough on a cash-for-reforms agreement at talks in Luxembourg on Thursday, just 12 days before Greece must make a crucial debt repayment to the International Monetary Fund.

“Regrettably … too little progress has been made. No agreement is in sight,” Jeroen Dijsselbloem, chairman of the Eurogroup, told a news conference. Ministers sent a strong signal that it is up to Greece to make new proposals, he said.  The European Central Bank told the meeting it was not clear whether Greek banks would be open on Monday, officials said.

The ECB’s governing council will hold a special conference call on Friday – the second in three days – to consider adding more emergency liquidity for Greek banks facing a quickening drain on their cash, two persons close to the situation said.  European Council President Donald Tusk said in a statement he had summoned heads of state and government of the euro area to meet in Brussels at 1700 GMT on Monday to discuss Greece “at the highest political level”.