Europe Speeds Spanish Bank Aid

Emergency loans could total $123 bln; governments aim for direct loans.

European governments will jump-start as much as 100 billion euros ($123 billion) in emergency loans to shore up Spain’s banks and may move the costs off the Spanish government’s balance sheet to shield the euro region’s fourth-largest economy from the debt crisis.

Spanish equities and bonds gained after finance chiefs agreed to make available 30 billion euros by the end of this month. The goal is to eventually use the euro-area bailout fund to recapitalize banks directly instead of saddling the government with the debts.

Single Bank Supervisor

Spain will set up a separate company to manage assets of banks tapping European support. Banks are sitting on about 180 billion euros of troubled assets linked to the real-estate industry as a property slump enters its fifth year.

‘Flexible and Efficient’

Ireland responded by stepping up calls for what Finance Minister Michael Noonan called an “ambitious” renegotiation of the terms of its 67.5 billion-euro bailout. Juncker said tweaks to the program are conceivable by October.

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