Its Europe's Turn

A British Bank called Bradford & Bingley has gone down. From The Telegraph…

B&B’s £24 billion of savings and its 200 branches is likely be sold to a rival or rivals. Spain’s Santander, which owns Abbey and is in the process of buying Alliance & Leicester, was in talks about possibly taking over deposits and branches, an industry source said.

But rivals are reluctant to take ownership of B&B’s book of £41 billion pounds of mortgages – representing 3.4 percent of UK mortgages – as many of them are higher risk buy-to-let and self-certified, which have a far higher chance of defaulting. More than eight out of ten of B&B’s mortgages are either buy-to-let or self-certified.

Hypo bank in Germany has big problems. From Naked Capitalism….

The prospect of an almost-as-big-as-Lehman bankruptcy evidently focused the mind of the officialdom. The providers are private firms, but one imagines, a la the LTCM rescue, that they were given a big prod by regulators It appears the amount of the facility is sufficient to refund maturing paper, but likely falls short of the end of troubles for this highly geared bank (a mere 6 billion euros of equity supporting a 400 billion euro balance sheet).

Fortis Bank (which is based in Belgium) has big problems. As Spiegel Reports….

The news came one day after the Dutch, Belgian and Luxembourg governments announced an €11.2 billion bailout of troubled Fortis bank, which saw a partial nationalization of the company. Fortis is Belgium’s largest bank, and the government in Brussels is providing €4.7 billion for a 49 percent stake in the company’s Belgian operations. Luxembourg is providing €2.5 billion for 49 percent of Fortis Bank Luxembourg, and the Dutch are investing €4 billion for 49 percent of Fortis Holding Netherlands.

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