Non-peforming loans as a proportion of total lending at Spanish banks dropped in December after lenders including Bankia SA transferred soured assets linked to real estate to the country’s bad bank.
The proportion fell to 10.44 percent from a record 11.38 percent in November, the Bank of Spain said on its website Monday. Doubtful assets declined to 167.4 billion euros ($224 billion) from 191.6 billion euros in November, the bank said.
Spain set up a bad bank known as Sareb under the terms of a European bailout for its banking system to absorb the soured assets of nationalized lenders such as the Bankia group. While the transfer of assets to Sareb in December brought down the bad-loans ratio after 20 straight monthly increases, a Spanish economy set to shrink for a second year in 2013 will continue to generate defaults, analysts and bankers say.
Sareb received 37 billion euros of assets from four nationalized lenders in December. The bad-loans ratio for Spanish lenders in December 2011 was 7.84 percent.
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