Banks preparing for "economic nuclear winter"

Posted 29 August 2016 Written by Russia Today
Category Banking

The Brexit vote, leading to Britain's exit from the European Union, is likely to trigger similar calls from France, Netherlands and other European countries tethered to a sinking economic union and a dodgy Euro. Bank stocks are already seriously under pressure from weak corporate earnings and economic uncertainty. According to this report from CNBC, banks are now preparing for the worst.

Weak corporate earnings, a banking crisis, and the Brexit vote are forcing banks to prepare for the worst case scenario in the second half of the year. According to CNBC quoting a major lender, banks are "preparing for an economic nuclear winter situation." 

This could mean triggering Article 50, a referendum in other European nations leading to a break-up of the euro or sterling hitting below $1.20 or lower. "The banks are ready for anything now," the source in the bank told the broadcaster.

After the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union in June, there have been talks a similar referendum may be held in France, the Netherlands and other countries.

"Markets hate uncertainty and the events this year have unfortunately created a lot of mystery around what is going to happen next," the source added.

Shares in the biggest banks have been plummeting. Deutsche Bank has lost almost 45 percent, Credit Suisse has lost 41 percent and the Royal Bank of Scotland went down 35 percent in 2016. Uncertainty and volatility has been spotted in all areas of the economy from mining to car production.

By far, Brexit has been the biggest uncertainty on the global financial agenda, but analysts urge companies to keep on working despite the unclear future and make steps to "de-risking and simplifying their businesses."

"I think the main problem for the second half of the year is the uncertainty caused by Brexit, though that's likely to persist for two years or more, so I suspect companies are likely to roll up their sleeves and get on with their business," Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown told CNBC.

Portugal to bail out its largest bank with €5 billion

The European Commission and Portugal have agreed to inject up to €5 billion into the country’s biggest and ailing bank Caixa Geral de Depositos (CGD), according to Russia Today.

The sum will include a €2.7 billion recapitalization provision, selling €1 billion in subordinated debt to private investors and converting €960 million of contingent convertible (CoCo) bonds into equity.

After Portugal had two bank rescues in 2014 and 2015, which has undermined investor confidence, its largest bank by assets CGD needs capital because of a number of bad loans.

Lisbon has been negotiating the deal with Brussels so the injection doesn’t count as state aid and therefore not subject to the budget deficit. Portugal has vowed to slash the budget deficit to 2.5 percent of GDP in 2016 from last year's 4.5 percent.




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