A decade after the conclusion of the first economic adjustment programme in 2010 and despite three consecutive recapitalizations, Greek banks still suffer from the highest Non-Performing Loans ratio in the Eurozone, with credit expansion in the “real economy” remaining anemic. Furthermore, the overall impact on public debt from government financial support to Greek banks over the last decade was one of the largest among the Eurozone countries.

What went wrong? What were the reasons that the domestic financial system ended up in this exceptionally sad state? Why did the recapitalization policy not have the desired outcome? Exploring these questions throughout the literature of responses to banking crises, this paper shows that recapitalization policy in Greece failed to exploit the advantages of the principal forms of bank rescues. In fact, the significant inertia prevailing among authorities and bankers throughout the recapitalizations brought about the ownership transfer of the Greek banking system to foreign hands (“dehellenization”) after the third recapitalization in late 2015.

You may acces the full paper by Dr. Athanasios Kolliopoulos, Postdoctoral Researcher at the Athens University of Economics and Business,  here.