Spain’s Biggest Bankruptcy Ever Hits Banks, Mexico, Brazil, Descends into Bitter Farce

“Negative profits were being converted into positives.”

Abengoa, the Spanish renewables giant that once thought it had mastered the dark arts of financialization only to crumble under the weight of its own debt, urgently needs a lifeline. In November, it filed for preliminary protection from creditors. If it doesn’t get a lifeline, it will be go down in history as Spain’s biggest bankruptcy ever.

According to the latest accounts, its creditors may have thrown it that lifeline, but barely enough to last through the very inconvenient general elections this Sunday and the holidays, when the government is off.

A Last Minute Stay

Amazing as it seems for a publicly traded company, there’s still “no official figure for the firm’s total financial liabilities,” Reuters reported, though “separate sources familiar with the matter say they total at least €25 billion.”

The banks on the hook for about 80% of that debt include Spain’s Santander, Caixabank, Bankia, Banco Sabadell and Banco Popular; France’s Credit Agricole, Société Generale and Natixis; London-based HSBC and the US behemoths Bank of America and Citi. These banks could have a big problem on their hands, especially since the Spanish government is currently powerless to intervene…

Continue reading the article at WOLF STREET

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