Dexia and ING’s recent decisions to call some of their subordinated debt has puzzled market observers, as they seem to fly in the face of the European Commission and its crusade on burden-sharing for banks that have received state aid.
What with unemployment climbing, housing as well as equities still well below their peaks and general anxiety about when the economy is going to rebound, it’s good news that consumers are cutting back on credit after binging for years. But Josh Shapiro, economist at MFR Inc, is not impressed.
Four Seasons Healthcare, the UK care home operator, has finally completed its 1.5 billion pound debt restructuring, after a year of creditor wrangling. The group has ended up in the lap of lenders including RBS, which owns about about 40 percent of the company.
It’s interesting to see the Irish government seems to have been keeping a close eye on the hybrid debt fiasco, as it is now embracing the securities as a way to ensure the country’s banks don’t get an easy ride offloading dud property loans to NAMA, its bad bank scheme. I guess you could call it a form of payback.
Financial crises tend to spark innovation, and this one will be no different. Today’s Times of London carries a story on a new security Lloyds Banking Group is devising to raise capital and reduce its participation in the British government’s asset protection scheme (GAPS).
So John Kingman is leaving UK Financial Investments “in due course” to spend more time with the private sector. That, at least, is the line put out by Robert Peston, the BBC reporter who could sometimes be confused for his personal press officer, on his blog.