HFSF warns troika over banks

Fund says delays to the publication of stress test results are hampering its mission By Yiannis Papadoyiannis

The Hellenic Financial Stability Fund (HFSF), which controls the country’s main banks, has sent a letter of warning to the troika regarding the consequences on the local credit sector of the delays in the determination of its capital requirements and in the vote on the new legal framework for lenders’ share capital increases.

In the letter the fund expresses serious concern about the delays in dealing with the banks’ pending issues, underscoring the responsibility of the representatives of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund for the failure to conclude the necessary talks.

Kathimerini has learned that, according to the letter, the continuous delays are putting Eurobank’s share capital increase at risk and stopping the fund from making the most of the positive timing in capital markets for the faster privatization of banks, while the failure so far to determine the capital requirements of each lender prevents the finalization of their restructuring plans.

The HFSF letter reminds its recipients that the fund’s mission is to restructure the country’s banks and to return them to the private sector as soon as possible. In this context it calls on the troika to contribute productively to creating the conditions needed and to provide the fund with all the tools it requires to execute its work.

BlackRock Solutions delivered the results of the stress tests on local banks’ loan portfolios in December, but the final results, as processed by the Bank of Greece, have not been announced to date. Bank sources share the opinion that it is the troika which is blocking their publication as it associates them with the general negotiation process with the Greek government on the progress of the streamlining program.