Spanish banks

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Spanish banks mitigate reliance on ECB

MADRID | By Fernando G. Urbaneja | In the midst of the financial turmoil (2012), the ECB facilitated liquidity to avoid the collapse of the European banks when the inter banking market was dried up and nobody lent money. The central bank had to act as “last resort banker” and maintain the system as well as guarantee liquidity. Those credit lines are amortized once their function has been accomplished. Now, they are preparing other measures to stimulate growth and avoid other threats such as deflation or stagnation.

Rescate banca

Healthy Spanish banks still have to pay €7.5bn for their peers

MADRID | By Julia Pastor | In the Spanish banks restructuring process, the €100 bn credit line coming from Brussels was crucial. However, Spain’s financial sector also saved itself by transferring €7.5 bn from the banks in better conditions to those that were nationalized, basically via contributions to the Deposit Guarantee Fund and the national bad bank Sareb. [Picture: “Banks should pay for the crisis”]

ecb stress tests

Why is the ECB so demanding with Spanish banks?

MADRID| By Francisco López | Spanish banks are the most closely examined in the world, but it does not seem to be enough for supervising institutions. The ECB has urged them to undergo a new and comprehensive assessment of their exposure to real state sector before the European banking industry’s Asset Quality Review previous to the stress tests that will take place by the end of the year. The central bank has rejected that Spain’s entities use 2012’s review by audit firm Oliver Wyman. Even though ,they reckon, that would save money and time.

Spanish banks

Spanish banks poised to face trouble

MADRID | By JP Marin Arrese | Not so long ago, markets gauged solvency problems in Spain to lay in former saving banks as many found themselves in a shambles. Few investors cast doubts on the main credit institutions, staunchly anchored in their extensive non-domestic business. Yet sentiment has markedly shifted as trouble is looming on Latin America. Argentina undoubtedly stands as a weird and quirky case. Still, the peso collapse has sent shivers down the spine.

Big Spanish banks rise profits fourfold to €8bn

MADRID | By Francisco López | As lower provisions, sale of assets and gains from financial operations enable big names such as Santander, BBVA, Caixabank, Bankia, Popular and Sabadell to multiply profits by four, the FT encourages to invest on Spanish banks, especially on medium size entities. However they have an unfinished business: profitability.

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Investors’ appetite for Spanish banks grow

MADRID| By Francisco López| Spain’s banking sector wholesale maturities will reach € 88,000 million in 2014 and € 72,000 million in 2015. Experts forecast that more than half will be financed via foreign markets.Only BBVA estimates to sell around € 7,000 million in bonds and covered bonds.


A diabolic loop of stagnation

MADRID | By Francisco López |  Spanish banks face into the new era of banking union with their homework successfully completed, both in terms of adjustments and efficiency in the stress tests. Their balance sheets are healthy, although now a new challenge awaits: how to improve profitability in an adverse economic cycle, with rates close to 0% and with credit lending remaining worryingly low. 

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A nasty surprise for Spanish banks

MADRID | By J.P. Marín Arrese | As credit institutions gathered in Frankfurt to meet top ECB officials for a first-hand appraisal of the forthcoming common supervision, the Spanish banks proved utterly misinformed. They had taken for granted that domestic sovereign bonds held in their balance sheets could be accounted at their nominal value. Yet Draghi failed to provide any assurance to that effect, hinting the issue being subject to review next year.

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Market Pledges for Spanish Banks Passing Stress Tests

MADRID | By Francisco López | If the efficient markets hypothesis is true, it’s almost sure that Spanish banks will pass next year stress tests. The stock market is clearly betting on the strength of the country’s banking sector, as the rise in its market capitalization by 40 billion euro in just four months shows. Also, its price rose an average of 40% in 2013 and most of them are trading above their book value.