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Bank of Spain to auction savings bank CAM

Source: Reuters - Fri 1st Apr 2011

The Bank of Spain will carry out an auction of Alicante-based savings bank Caja Mediterraneo this weekend, El Economista newspaper reported on Friday citing financial sources.

The Bank of Spain declined to comment on the report. A source close to the central bank told Reuters CAM was not the Bank of Spain's to sell, as it had not undergone any kind of state intervention and was an independent entity.

The Bank of Spain has sent documents regarding a sale of CAM, which failed to go through with a state-driven merger with other regional savings banks, to Spain's biggest banks including Santander, La Caixa and Popular, Spanish media reported on Friday.

These four banks declined to comment on whether they had received a document from the Bank of Spain and whether they were interested in buying CAM.

CAM, based in one of the regions worst hit by Spain's property crash, asked for state funds earlier this week after a planned merger with three other regional banks fell through.

Spain has demanded its banks increase their capital levels to tough new minimum levels in order to ward off international concerns about the stability of its financial system.

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