Bank sector gearing up for mergers

Developments in the local banking system are expected to be torrential in the coming months as lenders will need to seek out significant funds to bolster their financial figures, and all this at a particularly difficult juncture.

Everyone is now awaiting the results of a survey of the banks? loan portfolios conducted by US firm BlackRock, following an invitation by the Bank of Greece.

Analysts suggest that the application of strict evaluation criteria for loan portfolio quality will reveal a different picture to the one that financial figures currently show for banks. It will entail additional provisions that could rock the system which could not possibly have expected such a rapid deterioration three years ago.

Kathimerini understands that in the last few days, the discussions between specific pairs of banks have intensified with a view to a necessary consolidation in the market very soon: ?Whatever is to be done will take place by late August or early September at the latest,? sources suggest.