With European leaders including German Chancellor Angela Merkel insisting that the ball is now in Greece’s court following the people’s resounding “No” to bailout terms on Sunday, the president of the European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, finds himself in the uncomfortable position of being responsible for Greece’s immediate fate.
Like Greece, Mr. Draghi is running out of time and options. He keeps stressing that parliaments and politicians must decide on Greece’s future, but there’s no doubt that he’s a key player in this unfolding drama, with the power to kick Greece out of the euro almost overnight by shutting off its access to cash.
Greece is perhaps days away from bankruptcy. European leaders will be meeting on Tuesday to once again begin talks about whether Greece should receive a fresh bailout from its international creditors. But until they take that decision, it’s up to Mr. Draghi to decide how long he wants to keep Greece’s banks afloat.