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Indebtedness of Greek households: evidence from a survey


  • Theodore M. Mitrakos

    () (Bank of Greece)

  • Georgios Th Simigiannis

    () (Bank of Greece)

  • Panagiota G. Tzamourani

    () (Bank of Greece)


This paper assesses the level of households’ indebtedness and their financial stress using the results of a specific household survey conducted for this purpose in late 2002 - early 2003 by the Bank of Greece. The study also investigates the extent to which demographic and socio-economic characteristics of a household determine the probability of it being indebted. The survey results suggest that household debt in Greece is limited in relation to annual income and wealth, with outstanding debt usually not exceeding its annual income, even for households at the lowest income levels. For the majority of households, debt servicing obligations are well within their income capacity. Logistic regression analysis shows that the degree of urbanization (density of population) in the area of residence, the household's composition, the age and the educational level of the household head, the number of household members in employment and the household's income and wealth are all significant in determining the probability that a household will resort to borrowing.

Suggested Citation

  • Theodore M. Mitrakos & Georgios Th Simigiannis & Panagiota G. Tzamourani, 2005. "Indebtedness of Greek households: evidence from a survey," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 25, pages 13-35, AUgust.
  • Handle: RePEc:bog:econbl:y:2005:i:25:p:13-35

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    Cited by:

    1. Sofia Lazaretou, 2015. "How can the use of historical macroeconomic data series support economic analysis and policy-making? The new Greek macro history database 1833-1949 as part of the large database of Southeastern Europe," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 41, pages 71-101, July.
    2. Nikos Vettas & Ioannis Giotopoulos & Evangelia Valavanioti & Svetoslav Danchev, 2016. "The determinants of new firms’ export performance," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 43, pages 7-17, July.
    3. E. Marsellou & Y. Bassiakos, 2016. "Bankrupt Households and Economic Crisis. Evidence from the Greek Courts," Journal of Consumer Policy, Springer, vol. 39(1), pages 41-62, March.
    4. Konstantina Manou & Evangelia Papapetrou, 2016. "The economic behaviour of households in Greece: recent developments and prospects," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 44, pages 7-33, December.
    5. Ioannis Chatzivasiloglou, 2017. "The valuation of assets and liabilities of (re)insurance undertakings under solvency II," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 45, pages 63-90, July.
    6. Faidon Kalfaoglou, 2015. "Alternative approaches to NPLs resolution. Case studies," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 41, pages 45-70, July.
    7. Giorgos Argitis & Stella Michopoulou, 2013. "Studies in Financial Systems No 4 Financialization and the Greek Financial System," FESSUD studies fstudy04, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    8. Louzis, Dimitrios P. & Vouldis, Angelos T. & Metaxas, Vasilios L., 2012. "Macroeconomic and bank-specific determinants of non-performing loans in Greece: A comparative study of mortgage, business and consumer loan portfolios," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 1012-1027.
    9. Evangelia Georgiou, 2015. "The use of cash and electronic payment instruments in the economy," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 41, pages 31-44, July.
    10. Heather D Gibson & Georgia Pavlou, 2017. "Exporting and performance:evidence from Greek firms," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 45, pages 7-30, July.
    11. Sofia Anyfantaki, 2016. "The evolution of financial technology (FinTech)," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 44, pages 47-62, December.
    12. Ioannis Chatzivasiloglou, 2016. "Introduction to solvency ii of (re)insurance undertakings," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 44, pages 63-103, December.
    13. Costas N. Kanellopoulos, 2015. "The effects of minimum wages on wages and employment," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 41, pages 7-29, July.
    14. Styliani Belli & Constantina Backinezos, 2016. "The transition to the new methodology for the compilation of balance of payments statistics – BPM6," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 43, pages 19-29, July.
    15. Christos Papazoglou & Dimitrios Sideris & Orestis Tsagklas, 2016. "Europe as an optimum currency area: the experience of the Baltic countries," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 44, pages 35-46, December.
    16. George T Simigiannis & Panagiota Tzamourani, 2007. "Greek household indebtedness and financial stress: results from household survey data," IFC Bulletins chapters, in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.),Proceedings of the IFC Conference on "Measuring the financial position of the household sector", Basel, 30-31 August 2006 - Volume 2, volume 26, pages 157-171, Bank for International Settlements.
    17. Evangelos Charalambakis, 2017. "How did the Greek financial crisis impact on households? A comparison between the two waves of the HFCS," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 45, pages 31-45, July.
    18. Theodoros M. Mitrakos & George T. Simigiannis, 2009. "The determinants of Greek household indebtedness and financial stress," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 32, pages 7-26, May.
    19. Sophia Lazaretou, 2016. "The Greek brain drain: the new pattern of Greek emigration during the recent crisis," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 43, pages 31-53, July.
    20. Faidon Kalfaoglou, 2016. "Bank recapitalisation: a necessary but not sufficient condition for resuming lending," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 43, pages 55-75, July.
    21. Theodora Kosma & Evangelia Papapetrou & Georgia Pavlou & Christina Tsochatzi & Pinelopi Zioutou, 2017. "Labour market adjustment and labour market reforms in Greece during the crisis: findings from the third wave of the Wage Dynamics Survey," Economic Bulletin, Bank of Greece, issue 45, pages 47-62, July.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages


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