European Debt Crisis Affects Bank Loans

Companies find it harder, more expensive to borrow in Italy, Spain.

Banks in Spain and Italy are curbing loans and charging customers more as aftershocks from the sovereign debt crisis drive their own borrowing cost higher.

“They can’t lend what they don’t have, I suppose,” said Francesc Elias, the owner of Bomba Elias, a pumps and filters maker near Barcelona, which shelved a 100,000-euro ($144,000) plan to open a Bahrain office when it couldn’t get an affordable bank loan. “The banks are very clever about finding new ways to charge us more.”

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