Banks Drop 60% of Depositors
- An exceptional decision by the Central Bank allows the "Liberation" of small deposits by gravely adopting a definition of small deposits as those that do not exceed 5 million Lebanese liras or 3,000 dollars.
What does the decision mean to small depositors? It allows those with deposits of 3,000 dollars or less to withdraw their amounts in Lebanese liras according to the "market" price. It also allows those with deposits of 5 million Lebanese liras or less to exchange them for dollars according to the official price, and then to withdraw them in Lebanese liras according to the "market" price.
Does the decision define the market price? The decision did not define the market price. However, another decision announced the formation of a specialized unit within the decision announced the formation of a specialized unit within the Central Bank to deal with foreign currencies according to market prices, and therefore regulate the price of the dollar "in the market" for exchange shops affiliated with the Central Bank.
What does the decision mean for the banks? The decision is valid for 3 months and imposes a condition for depositors withdrawing the full amount. By then, banks would have gotten rid of the burden of small deposits, which constitute around 61% of total bank deposits and do not exceed 796 million dollars in total value. Banks accomplish all this, of course, without letting go of a single dollar bill.
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