Greek banks in the Balkan countries: conclusion derived from analysis of their balance sheets
During the 1990s the Greek economy has flourished, with the help of the banking system, which, at the same period, has undergone considerable deregulation. The stock market “explosion” at the end of the decade has provided the necessary funds for the expansion of many Greek Banks in various countries and particularly those of the Balkan area. Some Greek companies had already expanded their business activities in these countries, which at the time were in the process of transition to the market economy, thus giving to the Greek Banks the incentive to follow their clientele. The expansion of Greek banks in the Balkans was such that they obtained significant market shares in some of the area’s countries. In the current paper we make an effort to examine the feasibility of the expansion of Greek banks in these countries, focusing especially on their financial efficiency. To that end the Balance Sheets of the parent banks, as well as those of their Balkan subsidiaries and associate companies where they held an equity share were studied and analyzed. Our main conclusion is that the activities of the Geek banks in the area were successful and had positive effects to their profitability and they reinforced their overall financial state.
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