ECONOMY

HFSF probing suspicious loans issued to buy shares

The Hellenic Financial Stability Fund (HFSF) has ordered an exhaustive investigation into loans issued by banks to companies for the acquisition of shares, with checks already showing that at least one lender has issued suspicious loans, credit sector sources have indicated.

Ahead of the planned recapitalization process, the HFSF has in the last six months commissioned surveying firms to probe banks? loan portfolios. They have been examining loans issued for the purchase of shares and to companies related to shareholders of the same banks, in order to establish whether regulations have been breached or not.

The ongoing inspection has yielded certain suspicious loans issued by at least one bank, which are now being closely examined, according to banking sources. Some of the loans were even found to have been granted to officials and relatives of the same bank?s management.