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September 24, 2017, 10:45:16 pm Psalm 51:17 says: The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook. It states: “The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. “During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.”
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http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-08-11-new-fda-approved-hepatitis-b-vaccine-found-to-increase-heart-attack-risk-by-700.html
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September 11, 2017, 06:59:33 am Psalm 51:17 says: The law of reaping and sowing. It's amazing how God's mercy and longsuffering has hovered over America so long. (ie, the infrastructure is very bad here b/c for many years, they were grossly underspent on. 1st Tim 6:10, the god of materialism has its roots firmly in the West) And remember once upon a time ago when shacking up b/w straight couples drew shock awe?

Exodus 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
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akfools
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« on: October 17, 2011, 01:21:26 am »

Huge demonstrations erupt in Madrid, Spain

This was the view by the Puerta del Sol in Madrid at 8.30 pm on the October 15, 2011. Thousands of outraged people from the emblematic Plaza Alcalá Street and other surrounding streets, singing songs like "I call democracy and it is not" or "no, no, they do not represent us." (Miguel Angel Medina)

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« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2011, 07:19:24 pm »

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8903036/Spain-the-fifth-victim-to-fall-in-Europes-arc-of-depression.html

[size=18]Spain - the fifth victim to fall in Europe’s arc of depression[/size]
Let us all extend our sympathies to the Spanish people. They face the greatest national emergency since the Civil War yet their vote for drastic change is palpably useless, even if democracy has in this case at least been respected
.

As union leader Javier Dos put it, the EU-imposed austerity plans of the incoming Partido Popular are “nothing more than the continuation of policies leading Europe toward disaster”.

----------------------------------

The immediate destiny of his country lies entirely in the hands of Germany, the AAA creditor core, the EU authorities, and the European Central Bank, the nexus of policy-making power that together dictates whether Spain will be thrown a lifeline or be pushed further into depression and social catastrophe.

What can the quiet Galician do to stop Spain’s 22.6pc unemployment rate – or 46pc for youth – from ratcheting higher this winter as the combined effects of fiscal austerity and a credit crunch together do their worst? How can he stop real M1 deposits contracting at a 5pc rate.

--------------------------------

More than any other country, Spain exposes the lie behind this German narrative. It did not cheat, like Greece. It did not breach the Maastricht Treaty’s 60pc debt ceiling like Italy (or Germany itself). Its public debt was 36pc of GDP before the Great Recession. It ran a budget surplus of almost 2pc of GDP in 2007 and 2008.

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« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2011, 09:24:26 pm »

The masses need to realize that BOTH the "left" and "right" are merely 2 sides of the SAME coin. If Satan is divided against Satan, his kingdom is divided and falls...

http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/afp/spanish-right-wins-election-by-landslide-exit-poll/479759

11/21/11

Spanish right wins election by landslide: exit poll

Opposition leader Mariano Rajoy's Popular Party took an absolute majority of between 181 and 185 seats in the 350-member Congress of Deputies, said projections based on an exit poll by public broadcaster RTVE.

The ruling Socialist party PSOE won between 115 and 119 seats, the poll said.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Spain is the fifth and last of the so-called periphery eurozone nations to ditch its government this year after Ireland, Portugal, Greece and Italy.


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« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2011, 06:34:47 pm »

Fitch lowers Asturias region in Spain
23 November 2011, by Nathalie Tadena (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/fitch-lowers-asturias-region-in-spain-2011-11-23

Fitch Ratings downgraded the rating of the Spanish region of Asturias one notch, citing deterioration in its budgetary performance in the past three years amid growing debt.
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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2011, 12:35:33 pm »

Spanish regions will miss 2011 targets: Moody's
5 December 2011, by Barbara Kollmeyer - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-regions-will-miss-2011-targets-moodys-2011-12-05

Moody's Investors Service said Monday that Spain's regional governments are likely to exceed 2011 deficit targets by nearly one percentage point, which is credit negative for those regions.

The ratings firm said that even though data for the first nine months of the year indicate regions are implementing austerity measures, those efforts won't be enough to keep them from exceeding the deficit target of 1.3% of gross domestic product.

The recently elected Spanish government will have to tackle the regions' fiscal problems, as these problems threaten to increase national deficit figures in 2012, the ratings firm said. Deficit targets for 2011 and 2012 are key to rebuilding market confidence, and difficult market conditions have meant stretched liquidity for regions has deteriorated further, leading to the "accumulation of significant commercial debt," said Moody's.
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« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2011, 06:00:40 pm »

Spain's economy worsening, says central bank
29 December 2011, by Louise Armitstead (The Telegraph)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/8983322/Spains-economy-worsening-says-central-bank.html

The Bank of Spain has warned that the economy has worsened, rattling investor confidence in Europe's fourth biggest economy just as recently installed prime minister Mariano Rajoy prepares to unveil his immediate budget plans.

The central bank said early indicators show that Spanish tourism, exports, spending and investment have been hit, which is likely to have led to a contraction in GDP in the fourth quarter.

In its December bulletin the bank said: "After the stagnation the Spanish economy showed in the third quarter, the available economic information, still incomplete, indicates activity contracted in the final months of the year."

Mr Rajoy, who was elected in a landslide election victory in November, has said he will today unveil economic measures that will last until a full budget can be presented to parliament in the first quarter of the year.

Spain, which has the eurozone's third-biggest budget deficit, is already struggling under tough austerity measures and the highest unemployment rate for 15 years.

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« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2012, 08:22:48 am »

Spain public deficit may top 8 percent: minister


http://news.yahoo.com/spains-public-deficit-could-top-8-percent-economy-083542261.html

1/2/12

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's public deficit for 2011 may be higher than the 8 percent of GDP forecast by the new government, the economy minister said Monday, fuelling fears the country faces a prolonged period of tight budgets and economic contraction.
 
Spain had originally targeted a 2011 deficit of 6 percent of gross domestic product, but the newly elected conservatives said Friday the deficit would be 8 percent. It said it would now have to work hard to hit this year's tough deficit-reduction goals in an economy seen tipping back into recession this quarter and announced new tax rises and spending cuts.
 
"We'll need to see, but it's possible that we have gone over the 8 percent mark, though (we) expect that it hasn't done so by much," Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said during an interview with Cadena Ser radio, his first since taking the post after the conservatives won the November election.
 
Friday's announcement that the deficit would be as high as 8 percent of GDP has reignited market concerns about the financing needs of indebted euro zone countries and put downward pressure on the euro, which hit a decade low versus the yen Monday.

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« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2012, 02:54:01 pm »

Spain warns of higher budget deficit for 2011
30 December 2011, Barbara Kollmeyer - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spain-warns-of-higher-budget-deficit-for-2011-2011-12-30

More than a month after coming to power, the new center-right government in Spain has warned that the country's budget deficit will surpass prior expectations, hitting around 8% for 2011.

The prior government had predicted a budget deficit of 6%. Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria made the announcements at a press conference, in which she said the government had approved an austerity package worth €8.9 billion euros ($11.5 billion) to combat the country's economic and budgetary difficulties.

Saenz also said the government would need to increase some taxes on a temporary basis.
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« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2012, 09:16:22 am »

Spanish Unemployment Rises to 22.9%
27 January 2012, by Emma Ross-Thomas (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-27/spanish-unemployment-rises-to-22-9-.html

Excerpt:

Spain’s unemployment rate rose to 22.9%, the highest in 15 years, increasing pressure on Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to change labor rules and deliver on his election pledge to create jobs in a shrinking economy.

The unemployment rate rose in the fourth quarter from 21.5% in the previous three months, the National Statistics Institute in Madrid said today.

That’s more than twice the euro- region average and exceeds the median estimate of 22.2% in a Bloomberg survey of seven analysts.

Spain is home to a third of the euro region’s unemployed, according to the European Union’s statistics office, which estimates that half of young Spaniards are out of work.

The People’s Party government, which won the Nov. 20 election after a campaign focused on jobs, has promised to overhaul labor and wage rules in the next two weeks to prompt companies to hire.

Unemployment “is the main source of vulnerability of the Spanish economy and this is something that we hope to start to fix in the short term,” Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said today on Bloomberg Television in Davos, Switzerland.

“We have to take a lot of decisions because there are some things that don’t work properly in the labor market in Spain.”
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« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2012, 05:36:06 pm »

Spain Sinks Deeper Into Periphery on Debt Rise
20 February 2012, by Angeline Benoit (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-20/spain-descends-deeper-into-periphery-as-debt-burden-explodes-euro-credit.html

Excerpt:

Spain’s debt load is set to double from where it was when Europe’s sovereign debt crisis began, eroding the economic advantages that distinguished it from the region’s periphery and helped shield it from Greek contagion.

Finance chiefs meet in Brussels today in the latest effort to save Greece from default.

Spain went into the crisis with public debt of 40% of its GDP, compared with an average ratio of 70% in the euro region.

The European Union forecasts its debt will have almost doubled by next year, as Moody’s Investors Service says Spain is losing one of its “key relative credit strengths.”

Investors give Spain a discount of just 30 basis points on borrowing for a decade compared with what they charge Italy, down from 200 basis points at the end of last year.

Spain’s 10-year yield is 5.18%, up 33 basis points since Feb. 1.
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« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2012, 06:46:21 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/spain-toughens-stance-eu-deficit-stand-off-115124819.html

3/1/12

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain has stepped up its battle to secure more lenient deficit targets from the European Commission this year as its economy slips into recession.
 
A government source told reporters late on Wednesday that Spain would still be in compliance with European Union agreements on fiscal stability even if it did not hit a tough target of cutting the deficit to 4.4 percent of gross domestic product this year.
 
Spain would still be showing a commitment to fiscal stability and will be on track to hit the ultimate goal which is a deficit of 3 percent of GDP in 2013, the source said on condition he not be identified.
 
Madrid said this week that its 2011 budget deficit was 8.5 percent of GDP, 2-1/2 percentage points above a 6 percent target, putting the 2012 goal almost certainly out of reach.

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« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2012, 06:35:20 pm »

Spain lifts 2012 deficit goal to 5.8% of GDP - Government predicts growth to fall 1.7%, jobless atop 24% this year
2 March 2012, by Barbara Kollmeyer - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spain-lifts-2012-deficit-goal-to-58-2012-03-02

Excerpt:

With the ink barely dry on a new European Union treaty enshrining tougher budget rules, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said Friday the country would be targeting a higher deficit to GDP target for this year of 5.8%.

That’s well above the 4.4% target the prior government agreed with the European Union.

Speaking in Brussels at the conclusion of an EU summit, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said he had not informed his European counterparts because it was a “sovereign decision,” according to media reports.

He also said the limit respected European Union rules and the stability pact, those reports said, with Spain adding that it remains committed to hitting its target of cutting the deficit to 3% of GDP by 2013.

The Spanish media had been speculating for days that Spain would ask Brussels for a break on its budget target.

Economists have been warning the country could not drop the deficit from 8.5% last year to just over 4% this year, without strangling an already deeply depressed economy.

Earlier in the day, the government announced that unemployment rose to 4.7 million persons in February, a rise of 112,269 from the prior month.

Data released from Eurostat earlier this week revealed that Spain continues to hold the unenviable position of the highest unemployment in the euro zone, at 23.3% for January.

The government forecast Friday that unemployment would reach 24.4% this year.
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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2012, 02:58:49 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/spain-deficit-slippage-serious-says-eu-004001204.html

3/5/12

Spain is hurtling towards an embarrassing test case of new EU budget rules and possibly a big fine for a "grave" breach of deficit limits, the European Commission said on Monday.
 
The overshoot amounts to scores of billions of euros, and led analysts to warn that leaders may have signed away more sovereignty to Brussels than intended during the debt crisis and that the onset of recession risks derailing the implementation of new EU rules.
 
"We need to shed full light on what went on Spain in 2011," EU Economy Commissioner Olli Rehn's spokesman Amadeu Altafaj said of what he called a "serious, grave" gap in the figures.
 
Altafaj said Madrid notified Brussels on December 30 that it had overshot its 2011 deficit target by two percentage points, then two days ago that it was another half a percentage point higher.
 
Spain's 2011 public deficit was supposed to come in at 6.0 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) but ended up at 8.5 percent, meaning the state spent 90 billion euros ($119 billion) more than it took in last year.

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« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2012, 01:37:53 pm »

Yields on Italian, Spanish debt rise
6 March 2012, by Deborah Levine - New York (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/yields-on-italian-spanish-debt-rise-2012-03-06

Spain and Italy's cost of borrowing rose on Tuesday after a report said a Greek default would likely force Italy and Spain to seek aid.

However, the move took yields back to levels about a week ago, at worst - just before the European Central Bank's latest mammoth lending operation.

Spain's 10-year yields rose as high as 5.05% from 4.95% on Monday.

They topped 5.60% at the beginning of the year.

Italy's 10-year yields increased 10 basis points, or 0.1%, to 4.97%, though still near their lowest levels since last fall.

Italy's 2-year yields increased 3 basis points to 1.80% and Spain's were up 5 basis points to 2.31% -- both still down significantly from a week ago.
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« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2012, 06:15:39 pm »

Spanish house prices drop 11.2%, lowest since 2007
15 March 2012, by Barbara Kollmeyer - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-house-prices-drop-112-lowest-since-2007-2012-03-15

Spanish house prices fell 11.2% in the fourth quarter of 2011 on an annual basis, a decrease of almost four percentage points from the previous quarter, with the index at the lowest since the first quarter of 2007, the national statistical office said Thursday.

In the third quarter, house prices fell 7.4% The prices of used homes fell 13.7% in the quarter on an annual basis.

House prices have been sharply declining since the fourth quarter of 2010, amid a collapse in the housing industry, which spurred a downturn in the Spanish economy.
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« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2012, 12:18:31 pm »

http://news.yahoo.com/spain-edges-toward-economic-abyss-amid-europe-woes-155936054.html

3/28/12

MADRID (AP) — Investors concerned that Spain is fast becoming Europe's riskiest economic link and could be the next bailout candidate have plenty to worry about this week.

On Thursday, much of the country will shut down in a general strike against labor market reforms that make it cheaper for companies to fire and offers incentives for them to hire.

The next day, new center-right Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy is expected to unveil about €30 billion ($40 billion) in spending cuts and tax hikes in a deficit-slashing budget. This comes fast on the heels of a similar €15 billion austerity package unveiled less than three months ago as part of Spain's push to avoid joining the ranks of bailed-out Greece, Portugal and Ireland.

So far, Rajoy has only given hints about what's in store in the next round of fiscal pain for Spain, which is already lurching toward recession and is battered with an unemployment rate of nearly 23 percent, the highest among the 17 countries that use the euro.

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« Reply #16 on: April 05, 2012, 10:22:33 am »

Spanish, Italian yields surge after auction
4 April 2012, by Sara Sjolin - London  (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-italian-yields-surge-after-auction-2012-04-04

Yields on Italian and Spanish government bonds surged on Wednesday after Spain saw borrowing costs rise in its first auction demand since presenting its latest austerity budget last week.

In the secondary market, yields on 10-year Spanish government bonds jumped 11 basis points to 5.52%, after trading around 5.28% earlier in the week.

Yields on 10-year Italian government bonds gained 19 basis points to 5.26%.

Spanish yields jump above 5.7%; Italian yields up
5 April 2012, by Sara Sjolin - London (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-yields-jump-above-57-italian-yields-up-2012-04-05

Spanish and Italian bond yields continued to rise on Thursday, as the broader European equity market declined.

Yields on 10-year Spanish government bonds added 5 basis to 5.71%, the highest level since December last year, when the European Central Bank conducted its first three-year long-term refinance operation, LTRO.

On Wednesday, Spanish yields surged as much as 24 basis points. The IBEX 35 index gave up 0.7% to 7,609.60 Thursday.

Yields on 10-year Italian government bonds jumped 11 basis points to 5.4%, while the FTSE MIB index lost 0.8% to 15,109.55.
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« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2012, 04:19:03 pm »

Iran Escalates Again, Cuts Off Oil Shipments To Spain
10 April 2012, by Tyler Durden (Zero Hedge)
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/iran-escalates-again-cuts-oil-shipments-spain

Those hoping for a quick and painless resolution to the Iranian question may have just seen their hopes dashed, following the breaking news from Iranian Press TV, according to which not only is Iran not seeking to appease its Western counterparts, but is, in fact escalating.

From Press TV: "Tehran has cut oil supply to Spain after stopping crude export to Greece as part of its countersanctions, unnamed sources confirmed on Tuesday.

Tehran also mulls cutting oil supply to Germany and Italy."

"Countersactions" - lovely: another Swiss watch plan by the insolvent developed world.

Said otherwise, one can hardly threaten to do something to a country, which is already doing so voluntarily, in the process hurting Europe's already crippled economies even more by removing the cheapest source of energy for both.

Which however begs the question: just how much more Iranian crude are China and India importing despite promises to the contrary, and open warnings from the US not to do so?
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« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2012, 05:03:08 pm »

Bank of Spain: Country is back in recession
17 April 2012, by David Roman - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bank-of-spain-country-is-back-in-recession-2012-04-17

Spain's economy is back in recession after a mild recovery in early and mid-2011, and faces an "exceptional" situation that may led to further increases in unemployment, Bank of Spain Governor Miguel Angel Fernandez Ordonez said Tuesday.

The euro zone's fourth-largest economy is also conducting what Fernandez Ordonez called an "unprecedented" fiscal adjustment--seeking to lower its budget deficit from 8.5% of GDP last year to 5.3% of GDP this year--in an address to a parliamentary committee.

Fernandez Ordonez also defended the European Central Bank's move to provide ample bank liquidity via auctions conducted in December and February.

He added that, despite the misgivings of critics, the fresh liquidity inflow hasn't slowed down the progress of Spain's reform drive.
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« Reply #19 on: April 18, 2012, 03:25:40 pm »

"Not if, but when" for Spanish bailout, experts believe
17 April 2012, by Luke Baker - Brussels (Reuters)
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/17/eu-spain-idUSL6E8FHA1820120417

* Investor concerns target Spain as bond yields rise

* Analysts believe banks will need a euro zone bailout

* But Madrid could resist for months, even into 2013

* Critical factor is extent of Spanish mortgage debt


Spain’s Surging Bad Loans Cast New Doubts on Bank Cleanup
18 April 2012, by Charles Penty (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-17/spain-s-surging-bad-loans-cast-new-doubts-on-bank-cleanup-plan.html

Excerpt:

Spain’s surging bad loans are spurring doubt on whether the government can persuade investors that it can clean up the country’s banks without further damaging public finances.

Non-performing loans as a proportion of total lending jumped to 8.16% in February, the highest level since 1994, from less than 1% in 2007, according to Bank of Spain data published today.

The ratio rose from 7.91% in January as €3.8 billion of loans soured in February, a 110% increase from the same month a year ago.

That takes the total credit in the economy that the regulator lists as “doubtful” to €143.8 billion.

Defaults are rising and credit is shrinking at a record pace as 24% unemployment corrodes the quality of loans built up in the country’s credit boom and saps the appetite of banks to make new ones.

Doubts about the extent of Spain’s non- performing loans problem is hurting bank stocks and driving up the government’s borrowing costs on investor concern that the expense of propping up ailing lenders may add to the debt burden.

“One of our concerns in Spain is to what extent contingent liabilities could pass to the central government,” said Andrew Bosomworth, Pacific Investment Management Co.’s Munich-based head of portfolio management.

Non-performing loans “will have to rise when you take into account the unemployment rate and what’s happening with the economy,” he said.
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« Reply #20 on: April 18, 2012, 03:28:56 pm »

Spanish banks' bad-loan ratio hits 18-year high
18 April 2012, Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-banks-bad-loan-ratio-hits-18-year-high-2012-04-18

Spanish bank's bad loans ratio hit a 17-year high in February, with the ratio topping 8%, the central bank said Wednesday.

The Bank of Spain data showed that 8.16% of the loans held by banks, or €143.82 billion, were more than three months overdue for repayment in February, up from 7.91% in January.

This is the highest percentage recorded since October 1994, and contrasts with bad debt levels below 1% of all loans in the years prior to the 2008 collapse of the country's property market.

Spanish Banks Gorging on Sovereign Bonds Shifts Risk
18 April 2012, by Yalman Onaran (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-17/spanish-banks-gorging-on-sovereign-bonds-shifts-risk-to-taxpayer.html

Excerpt:

Spanish, Italian and Portuguese banks are loading up on bonds issued by their own governments, a move that shifts more of the risk of sovereign default to European taxpayers from private creditors.

Holdings of Spanish government debt by lenders based in the country jumped 26% in two months, to €220 billion ($289 billion) at the end of January, data from Spain’s treasury show.

Italian banks increased ownership of their nation’s sovereign bonds by 31% to €267 billion in the three months ended in February, according to Bank of Italy data.

German and French banks, meanwhile, have cut holdings of those countries’ bonds, as well as Irish and Greek debt, by as much as 50% since 2010 in some cases.

That leaves domestic firms on the hook for a restructuring such as Greece’s last month and their main financier, the European Central Bank, facing losses.

Like Greece, governments would have to rescue their lenders with funds borrowed from the European Union.

“The more banks stop cross-border lending, the more the ECB steps in to do the financing,” said Guntram Wolff, deputy director of Bruegel, a Brussels-based research institute.

“So the exposure of the core countries to the periphery is shifting from the private to the public sector.
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« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2012, 01:25:38 pm »

Borrowing costs rise for Spain at key auctions
19 April 2012, by Barbara Kollmeyer - Madrid (MarketWatch)
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/borrowing-costs-rise-for-spain-at-key-auctions-2012-04-19

The Spanish Treasury on Thursday sold €2.54 billion ($3.33 billion) in bonds dated 2014 and 2022, which was more than expected, but its borrowing costs rose.

The Treasury had been targeting a range of €1.5 billion to €2.5 billion for the auction.

The yield on the 10-year auction rose to 5.74% from 5.403% at a prior auction of similar paper in January.

For the auction of two-year paper, the yield rose to 3.46% from a prior 2.069% at an auction in March.

The 10-year auction was covered 2.42 times, versus a prior 2.16 times, while the 2-year auction was covered 3.28 times from a prior 2.81.

The yield on the 10-year Spanish government bond in second markets rose 2 basis point to 5.87%, according to Tradeweb, while the Spain IBEX 35 index fell 0.7% to 7,032.40.
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« Reply #22 on: April 23, 2012, 01:50:55 pm »

Spain economy shrank 0.4 percent in Q1 - central bank
23 April 2012, Madrid (Reuters)
http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/04/23/uk-spain-economy-idUKBRE83M0DY20120423

Spain's economy probably contracted 0.4% in the first quarter of 2012, its central bank said on Monday, the first clear official confirmation of the scale of recession in one of the two large economies at the centre of the euro zone's debt crisis.

Government and economists' forecasts have been pointing for some time to a contraction at the start of this year in quarter-on-quarter terms, but the figure in the central bank's monthly report has tended to give an accurate reflection of official data. The official numbers are due on April 30.

The Bank of Spain's report said weak domestic demand had dragged the economy into its second formal recession - two consecutive quarters of negative quarterly growth - since 2008 while the outlook for the rest of the year was uncertain.

"The Spanish economy began 2012 in relapse, in which very weak domestic demand side was only offset by relative strength in the external sector," the bank said.

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« Reply #23 on: April 25, 2012, 05:17:36 pm »

Rising Italy-to-Spain Yields Keep Banks on Life Support
25 April 2012, by Liam Vaughan and Gavin Finch (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-24/rising-italy-to-spain-yields-keep-banks-on-life-support.html

Excerpt:

European lenders, more reliant than ever on emergency aid after borrowing $1.3 trillion from their central bank, may need additional cash infusions until policy makers stem the crisis engulfing Spain and Italy.

After more than 30 bond sales in the first quarter, no bank has sold unsecured debt this month, and the cost of insuring against default has soared to levels last seen in January.

Financial stocks, which rallied 20% following the European Central Bank’s December decision to provide unlimited three-year loans, are now 2% lower since then.

Investors are balking after some lenders used the ECB cash to boost holdings of sovereign debt and governments struggled to rein in deficits.

Because banks post collateral in exchange for the ECB loans, the amount unsecured bondholders would get back in a default has shrunk.

That has raised funding costs for what Morgan Stanley estimates is about €700 billion ($924 billion) of debt lenders must refinance by the end of 2013.

“There is a very compelling case for further intervention from the ECB,” said Barbara Ridpath, chief executive officer of the International Centre for Financial Regulation, a London- based research group funded by banks and the U.K. government.

“Many of these banks simply cannot refinance their maturing debt in the bond market.”
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« Reply #24 on: April 26, 2012, 07:07:16 pm »

Spain’s Ratings Cut by S&P on Deficit, Bank Bailout Concern
26 April 2012, by Cordell Eddings (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-26/spain-s-ratings-cut-by-s-p-on-deficit-bank-bailout-concern.html

Spain’s sovereign credit rating was by Standard & Poor’s on concern the nation will have to provide further fiscal support to the banking sector as the economy contracts.

Spain’s short-term rating was lowered to A-2 from A-1, while the outlook on the long-term rating is negative, New York- based S&P said in a statement today.

The nation’s 10-year borrowing costs have climbed about 70 basis points this year as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy struggles to convince investors he can control public finances amid soaring unemployment and a contracting economy.

Banks threaten to disrupt the premier’s efforts as bad loans reach the highest levels in almost two decades.

“Spain’s budget trajectory will likely deteriorate against a background of economic contraction,” S&P wrote in the statement.

“At the same time, we see an increasing likelihood that Spain’s government will need to provide further fiscal support to the banking sector.

As a consequence, we believe there are heightened risks that Spain’s net general govern debt could rise further.”

Yields on 10-year Spanish bonds surpassed 6% on seven trading days this month, boosting concern that borrowing costs may reach levels that prompted bailouts for Greece, Ireland and Portugal. The rate was 5.83%.


Budget Shortfall

The Bank of Spain said April 23 that GDP contracted 0.4% in the first quarter, tipping the nation into its second recession since 2009.

Rajoy said March 2 that that nation would miss its 4.4% deficit target and then agreed 10 days later with euro-region finance ministers to a new goal of 5.3%.

Spain’s budget shortfall will reach 6% this year and 5.7% in 2013, as the government pushes through the deepest budget cuts in at least three decades, according to forecasts from the International Monetary Fund published April 17.

Debt will reach 84% of GDP next year.

While that’s less than France and Italy, it’s up from 40% in 2008, when a real estate boom started to collapse.

“We could also consider a downgrade if political support for the current reform agenda were to wane,” the S&P statement said.

“ Moreover, we could lower the ratings if we see that Spain’s external position worsens or its competitiveness does not continue to approach that of its trading partners, a key factor for Spain to return to sustainable economic and employment growth.”
 
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« Reply #25 on: April 26, 2012, 07:10:47 pm »

Spain Yields at 6% Show Bank, Economy Risk: Euro Credit
26 April 2012, by Emma Charlton and Lukanyo Mnyanda (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-26/spain-yields-at-6-show-bank-economy-risk-euro-credit.html

Excerpt:

As Spain’s recession undermines efforts to cut the deficit, the risk of bank losses is keeping 10-year yields at almost 6% as investors speculate the government will be forced to bail out the financial system.

The nation’s 10-year borrowing costs have climbed about 70 basis points this year as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy struggles to convince investors he can control public finances amid soaring unemployment and a contracting economy.

Banks threaten to disrupt the premier’s efforts as bad loans reach the highest levels in almost two decades.

“Spain is likely to need support in both the banking and government sectors,” said Jamie Stuttard, head of international bond portfolio management at Fidelity Investments, which has $1.2 trillion of assets.

“Government bond market developments hold the key.”

Yields on 10-year Spanish bonds surpassed 6% on seven trading days this month, boosting concern that borrowing costs may reach levels that prompted bailouts for Greece, Ireland and Portugal.

The rate was 5.77% at 9:03 a.m. London time.

Investors lost 1.2%, including reinvested interest, on Spanish debt repayable in one year or more over the past three months, according to indexes compiled by Bloomberg and the European Federation of Financial Analysts Societies.

The bonds are the worst performers in Europe after Greece.
 
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« Reply #26 on: April 27, 2012, 12:24:14 pm »

Germany Rejects Spain Banks Tapping Bailout Fund, Meister Says
27 April 2012, by Rainer Buergin and Brian Parkin (Bloomberg)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-04-27/germany-rejects-spain-banks-tapping-bailout-fund-meister-says.html

Spain’s rating downgrade at Standard & Poor’s doesn’t alter Germany’s stance that banks can’t have direct access to Europe’s financial backstops, a senior lawmaker from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party said.

“The German position is absolutely strict,” Michael Meister, the deputy caucus chairman of Merkel’s Christian Democrats, said in a phone interview in Berlin.

“And since such aid programs require unanimity, there’s not going to be any change. All sorts of people can try to set things in motion, but Germany won’t vote for it.”

It’s “obvious” that there can’t be unconditional help from the European Stability Mechanism to Spanish banks, Meister said today.

The responsibility and liability for the ESM lies with its members, which are nation states, not banks, he said.

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« Reply #27 on: April 28, 2012, 04:47:14 pm »

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17866382

4/27/12

Spanish unemployment hits record 5.64 million

Spanish unemployment has hit a new record high, official figures have shown.

The number of unemployed people reached 5,639,500 at the end of March, with the unemployment rate hitting 24.4%, the national statistics agency said.

The figures came hours after rating agency Standard & Poor's downgraded Spanish sovereign debt.

Official figures due out on Monday are expected to confirm that Spain has fallen back into recession.

Earlier this week, the Bank of Spain said the economy contracted by 0.4% in first three months of this year, after shrinking by 0.3% in the final quarter of last year.

Other figures released on Friday showed that Spanish retail sales were down 3.7% in March from the same point a year ago, the 21st month in row sales have fallen.

'Huge crisis'
 
In the first three months of the year, 365,900 people in Spain lost their jobs.

The country has the highest unemployment rate in the European Union and it is expected to rise further this year.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote
The recession is so deep that when you take one step forward on austerity, it takes you two steps back”
End Quote
Stephen King
 
Chief economist, HSBC
 
What ails the Spanish economy?

The rate has risen sharply since April 2007, when it stood at 7.9%.

"The figures are terrible for everyone and terrible for the government... Spain is in a crisis of huge proportions," Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo said.

The new government has announced reforms to the labour market, including cutting back on severance pay and restricting inflation-linked salary increases, that it hopes will ease the problem.

These measures have angered unions, which have organised widespread general strikes in protest.

The government has also introduced drastic spending cuts designed to reduce its debt levels and meet deficit targets agreed with the European Union. These cuts are contributing to Spain's economic contraction.

"In Spain today, a cycle similar to Greece is starting to develop," said HSBC chief economist Stephen King.

"The recession is so deep that when you take one step forward on austerity, it takes you two steps back."

The interest rate, or yield, on Spanish government bonds traded in the secondary market rose following the release of the unemployment figures and the S&P downgrade.

The yield on 10-year bonds rose to 5.96%, up from 5.81%, suggesting investors were becoming more wary of Spain's ability to repay its debts.

Also on Friday, the interest rate Italy has to pay to borrow money from international investors rose. In a sale of 10-year bonds, the government offered a rate of 5.84% compared with 5.24% at a similar sale a month earlier.

However, the government raised 5.95bn euros ($7.88bn; £4.85bn), towards the top end of its target range.

'Comprehensive' reforms
 
Late on Thursday night, the ratings agency Standard & Poor's cut Spain's rating by two notches to BBB+, warning that the country might have to take on more debt to support its banking sector.

S&P predicts the Spanish economy will shrink by 1.5% this year, having previously forecast 0.3% growth.

However, the agency did make a number of positive comments about the government's attempts to bolster Spain's economy.

"We believe that the new government has been front-loading and implementing a comprehensive set of structural reforms, which should support economic growth over the longer term," S&P said.

"In particular, authorities have implemented a comprehensive reform of the Spanish labour market, which we believe could significantly reduce many of the existing structural rigidities and improve the flexibility in wage setting."
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« Reply #28 on: April 30, 2012, 10:47:39 pm »

Spain tumbles into recession
30 April 2012, by Katell Abiven - Madrid (AFP)
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hj4_SVRRYsmDS2zU0bRx4ZAnYGnQ

Spain has toppled back into recession, official data confirmed Monday, but the government warned there was no alternative to austerity to build future growth.

Spain's gross domestic product shrank by 0.3% in the first quarter of 2012, equalling the slump in the final quarter of 2011, according to preliminary data from the National Statistics Institute.

The recession returned barely two years after Spain emerged gingerly from the last downturn.

Despite growing opposition to cuts during a recession with 24.4% unemployment in the first quarter, Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said fiscal restraint was more essential than ever.

"The Spanish government does not see any incompatability between austerity and economic growth," he told a news conference in Santiago de Compostela after talks with his German counterpart Wolfgang Schaeuble.

"Budget discipline is unavoidable if we want to build solid foundations and sufficient financing for economic growth in our country -- it is a necessary condition," he said.

Tens of thousands of people took the streets on Sunday to protest against austerity measures by Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's conservative government, especially those affecting health care and education.

"Looking ahead, we fear that things are likely to get worse before they get better," warned ING economist Martin van Vliet.

"Indeed, the ongoing drag from real estate and the sheer scale of Spain's planned fiscal adjustment -- more than four percent of GDP this year -- mean that the recession will almost certainly deepen in the coming quarters, pushing unemployment to even more dramatic highs."

Doubts about Spain's ability to meet its deficit goals have been amplified by the plight of the banks, many bogged down in bad loans extended during a property boom which collapsed in 2008.

Standard & Poor's on Monday downgraded the ratings of the top Spanish banks, including Santander and BBVA, after slashing the country's credit standing because of the deficit and recession.

The banks affected include Santander and its subsidiary Banesto, BBVA, Banco Sabadell, Ibercaja, Kutxabank, Banca Civica, Bankinter and the local unit of Barclays.

The government said it was studying a scheme to allow banks to split off their bad loans and place them into a separate agency but without financial help from the state.

An economy ministry official said banks that joined the scheme would have to set aside financial provisions that recognise the sharply reduced market value of the loans, extended during the housing bubble.

"If the valuation of the assets is correct, the possibility of separating property assets from bank balance sheets is something that I think makes sense and is positive for the entities," De Guindos said.

"It allows them to free up capital and fundamentally allows the banks to focus on their core business which is banking and not real estate," he said.

Bank of Spain figures on Friday showed commercial banks held problem real estate loans worth €184 billion ($243 billion), some 60% of their property portfolio at the end of 2011.

The ratio of bad loans -- those at least three months in arrears -- hit an 18-year high in February of 8.15% of total credit extended.

Spain aims to lower the public deficit -- the shortfall in revenues to spending -- to 5.3% of GDP this year and 3.0% of GDP next year, after allowing it to hit 8.5% of GDP in 2011.

The accumulated public debt is officially forecast to leap to 79.8% of GDP this year from 68.5% at the end of 2011.
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« Reply #29 on: April 30, 2012, 10:54:51 pm »

Spain's Central Bank consults experts on toxic assets: sources
30 April 2012 , by Fiona Ortiz - Madrid (Reuters)
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/30/us-spain-banks-idUSBRE83T13G20120430

Spain's Central Bank is consulting with international bankers and property experts on setting up a holding company to value and sell off toxic real estate assets from the country's troubled financial sector, two sources said on Monday.

The consultation process will last a few weeks, one of the sources, from the central bank, said. "When we have those opinions we will use them for input on the formula for the entity," the source told Reuters.

Spain's banks were hit by billions of euros of losses after a decade-long property bubble burst in 2008 and concern about them, and the country's overspending regional governments, have fanned fears of a new euro zone debt crisis.

It has restructured the financial sector three times, injected some €18 billion into the system, taken over five banks and forced banks to recognize steep losses.

But investors are not convinced all the risks have been worked out of the system and Spain's borrowing costs are hovering around 6%, a point below levels deemed unsustainable.

The government is looking at what it calls a liquidation structure -- refusing to use the term bad bank -- to take toxic assets off the banks' books.

"Separating the real estate assets from the bank balances is something that makes sense and is positive for the banks from many points of view," Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said at a news conference on Monday.

"It allows you to free up capital and fundamentally it allows the banks to do their banking business and not the real estate business," he said.

Asked which banks were advising the government de Guindos declined to answer, saying talks were ongoing. The Bank of Spain source also declined to name the advisers.


DOWNGRADE

Credit ratings agency Standard & Poor's downgraded Spain's public debt by two notches last week, saying the country's banks could become a burden for the state.

It followed that up on Monday by chopping the credit score of 11 banks saying they faced the same economic risks as government debt.

The government has ruled out seeking an international bailout like Greece, Portugal and Ireland and has said several times that it is not following Ireland's bad-bank model.

Under the current thinking, the Spanish entity will not have a banking license and will not be able to do financial operations, but will function as a real estate liquidation firm.

The banks are holding some €184 billion of troubled real estate assets, including land, buildings and bad loans to developers.

They will write off some 60% of that in forced provisioning this year under new rules announced by de Guindos in February.

On Friday government officials said that if the assets that go into the liquidation company sell for less than their written-down value, the banking sector will have to absorb the losses.

However, it is not clear how that would be done and over what time period.


BANKIA UNDER SCRUTINY

One of Spain's bigger banks, Bankia, lies at the heart of concerns over the banking system due to its large exposure to the country's property sector.

A holding company solution might benefit Bankia and its parent company Banco Financiero y de Ahorros (BFA), which have repossessed real estate assets of around €11 billion of which €5 billion are undeveloped land.

Under de Guindos's new rules for banks, it must boost capital this year by €5 billion to cushion against future losses. It has already set aside about half of that.

Despite pressure to consolidate with another bank, Bankia is sticking to its standalone strategy, saying it could meet requirements for provisions against property losses without public money or a merger.

The Central Bank is in the process of auctioning off Banco Valencia and CatalunyaCaixa, which it took over last year.

Up until now it has had to provide steep guarantees against future losses in order to unload rescued banks.

Financial sources expect Banco Valencia to be taken over by a mid-sized savings bank while bigger banks are looking at CatalunyaCaixa.

Santander, the euro zone's biggest bank, has so far stayed out of the banking consolidation fray in Spain, but its chief executive said last week that it was looking at the next banks the Central Bank will be selling off.

Savings bank CatalunyaCaixa could offer Santander or another Spanish banking giant BBVA a way to increase their network in the industrialized eastern region of Catalonia.
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