Just minutes after the the EU ruling on ‘floor clauses’ was released, the banks in Spain’s blue-chip Ibex 35 index ended up dropping over 10%. But most of the lenders recovered ground by the end of the session. Afi estimates the ruling will affect the banking sector as a whole to the tune of some 4.5 billion euros.
European Court of Justice
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has ruled that Spanish banks have to return all the extra money they charged clients affected by the ‘floor clauses’ included in their mortgage contracts. The court has rejected the idea of a time-limited retroactive effect because it is “incomplete and insufficient”.
The European Court of Justice advocate general made public on Wednesday a detailed opinion from an advisers group on so-called floor clauses in Spanish mortgage contracts. This recommendation suggests the court should apply retroactively a “temporal limit” on the amounts banks will have to reimburse borrowers. Floor clauses were already declared unfair by Spanish Supreme Court in 2013 May.