Banco Sabadell SA agreed to acquire stricken Spanish lender Caja de Ahorros del Mediterraneo for one euro in a deal financed and guaranteed by Spain’s commercial lenders as an effort to shield the national budget from losses.
Spain’s deposit-guarantee fund, which is financed by the country’s banks, will first inject 5.25 billion euros ($7 billion) into Alicante-based CAM. The impact on Spain’s budget will be “nil,” as the deposit fund will also guarantee losses arising over the next decade, the state bailout fund said.
The deal will create a lender with 166 billion euros in assets, Spain’s fifth-largest, combining Sabadell with a savings bank that was seized by the Bank of Spain in July after souring property loans wrecked its business. Spanish bank mergers are gathering pace, with Banco Popular Espanol SA announcing a 1.35 billion-euro takeover of Banco Pastor SA in October.
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