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Cajas hold 84bln Euros in 'problematic assets'

Tue 22th Feb 2011

Spain's cajas are currently in possession of around €100bn "potentially problematic" real estate assets, according to the Bank of Spain. This is the first time that a financial value has been applied to both bad debts and the total proprty assets of the cajas - the overall value of all property assets totals some €217bn.

Yesterday the Governor of the Bank of Spain said that the exposure of the cajas did not endanger the country's financial industry as a whole. Only last week the Spanish government approved laws requiring that unlisted regional banks increased their capital reserves. Under the new law Banks will be required to hold core capital levels of at least 8% and non-listed cajas to hold at least 10%.

The lenders have been given until September to comply, with Governor Ordóñez calling the move. "absolutely necessary."

The Bank of Spain is due to publish an estimate of the financing needs for each caja next month, following the EU commission's further round of bank stress tests on the wnd March.

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