Nothing but negotiation

The Gap Partnership

Spanish savings banks looking to mergers and acquisitions

A number of Spain's biggest savings banks are looking into potential mergers.

01 June 2010

Some of the biggest banks in Spain are looking into possible merger deals as they attempt to emerge from the ongoing economic downturn unscathed.

Following on from the news that a number of smaller savings banks have had to be rescued by the Spanish central bank, it has emerged that around a dozen have now started negotiations over possible mergers.

Among the biggest to set off down this path are Barcelona-based La Caixa and Caja Madrid, with the pair having embarked upon separate mergers with some of their smaller counterparts dotted around the country, the Wall Street Journal has reported.

Speaking to the newspaper, Citigroup economist Giada Giani explained of the economic climate in Spain: "This points to a phase of mergers likely to occur at an increasing pace in coming weeks."

News of the upturn in potential mergers and acquisitions across Spain comes as the European Central Bank has warned that banks in the Eurozone may have to write off bad loans totalling some €195 billion over the next couple of years.

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