Greek banks are shut down as officials try to stop the country’s financial system from collapsing.
Account holders were facing tough limits on what they can withdraw from ATMs, and trading in Greek stocks was also halted. European leaders are facing one of the worst moments in the Euro’s history. The five year financial crisis in Greece took its most dramatic turn yet.
Yesterday the European Central Bank said it would provide no new emergency support to Greek banks. Greece is ultimately heading for default as early as tomorrow and may have to leave the Euro.
Today pensioners were lined up outside a closed branch of Greece’s national bank in Athens. The government has decided the country’s banks will stay closed for 6 business days and restrictions will be imposed on cash withdrawls to the equivalent of 81 dollars a day.
One bank in each municipality has been given permission to stay open to allow seniors to withdraw their pension. With no agreement in place for fresh funding, Athens is scrambling to prevent a run on the banks.
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker says he feels “betrayed” by Greece and urged people to vote yes in the upcoming referendum on whether to accept the bailout terms their government has rejected.
“After all my efforts and the efforts made by the Commission, and by other institutions involved in the process, I feel a little betrayed because not due consideration is being given to my personal efforts and the efforts of others.”
The government’s moves are meant to stop the flow of money out of Greek banks and spur the country’s creditors to offer concessions before a bailout program expires tomorrow. Tourists should still have access to cash and debit and credit cards issued abroad should function normally.
Additional video: Annette Hamm interviews Marvin Ryder of the DeGroote School of Business: