Bail-out restructuring could lead to 4500 job cuts

Spanish banking giant announces €19bn losses for 2012

GMT 14:40 2013 Thursday ,28 February

Arab Today, arab today Spanish banking giant announces €19bn losses for 2012

Bankia has become a symbol of Spain’s recession-racked economy
Madrid - Arabstoday

Bankia has become a symbol of Spain’s recession-racked economy Bailed-out Spanish banking giant Bankia suffered a loss of €19bn ($25bn) in 2012, it said in an earnings statement on Thursday, AFP has reported. Bankia, which has become a symbol of Spain's banking collapse, said the losses were in line with its expectations after the Spanish government nationalised it in May.
In December it received €18bn in eurozone aid to restructure it.
Bankia's chairman Jose Ignacio Goirigolzarri said that despite the net losses of €19.193bn the bank's financial situation was in line with its aims.
"We have a very solvent balance sheet. We are a tremendously solvent and solid entity," he told a news conference.
The European Commission approved the payment of €18bn to rescue Bankia, obliging it to restructure by closing branches and cutting jobs.
The bank has announced it will close a third of its branches. Unions say the restructuring will lead to 4,500 job cuts.
A long recession brought on by the collapse of a building boom in 2008 left Bankia saddled with unpaid loans.
In Thursday's earnings report BFA-Bankia, the financial group that includes the troubled lender, said it made provisions of €26.8bn in 2012.
It offloaded €22.3bn orth of bad property-linked assets to a "bad bank" set up to purge the bad loans of Spain's banks. Of this figure, 19.5bn were from Bankia.
After the government stepped in to rescue Bankia by nationalising it, Spain then had to seek a broader bailout for its whole banking sector from the eurozone.
The recession has driven Spain's unemployment rate to 26 percent.

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