Chief Correspondent, Reuters Spain
Fiona's Feed
Apr 15, 2013

Alleged HSBC data thief in extradition hearing in Spain

MADRID (Reuters) – A former HSBC employee wanted in Switzerland on allegations of stealing data on tens of thousands of bank accounts came before a Spanish court on Monday for extradition proceedings, arguing he was a whistleblower fighting corruption.

The data caused a furore in 2010 when it ended up in the hands of tax authorities in France, Italy, Spain and other European countries, which have used it to seek to recover billions of euros in lost taxes.

Apr 11, 2013

A hit TV show rises from the ashes of Spain’s crisis

BARCELONA, Spain, April 11 (Reuters) – Every Sunday evening
up to 4.3 million people in Spain tune into a quirky but
hard-hitting news show that has become an unlikely television
success as crisis-plagued Spaniards try to figure out how their
country got into the mess it is in.

On “Salvados”, which means “Saved” in English, journalist
Jordi Evole, 38, asks experts and ordinary people disarmingly
simple questions to explain the costly bailout of Spain’s banks
or the looming hole in the pension system.

Apr 4, 2013

Spaniards lose patience with rotten institutions

MADRID (Reuters) – When a corruption scandal hit Spain’s ruling party earlier this year, attention turned to the Accounts Tribunal, an obscure body that audits public spending.

Surely this independent institution, with an annual budget of $78 million and 800 workers, could shed light on allegations in the media that a former treasurer for the People’s Party had run a slush fund from party headquarters.

Mar 30, 2013
via FaithWorld

Spain’s Holy Week parades thrive despite falling Catholic faith

Photo

(A penitent of “La Lanzada” brotherhood walks to a church to start his penance during Holy Week in the Andalusian capital of Seville, southern Spain, March 27, 2013. REUTERS/Marcelo del Pozo)

It is 1 a.m. on Good Friday and thousands of people hush their chatter in Seville’s Duque Plaza. A cloud of incense is the only sign of what approaches.

Mar 29, 2013

Spain’s holy parades thrive despite falling faith

SEVILLE, Spain (Reuters) – It is 1 a.m. on Good Friday and thousands of people hush their chatter in Seville’s Duque Plaza. A cloud of incense is the only sign of what approaches.

First come the penitents, hundreds of mute figures in cone shaped hoods and long robes. They carry meter-long white candles. Then the centerpiece sways into view – a gilded float with an 18th Century wooden statue of Jesus.

Mar 19, 2013

As scandal swirls, Spain probes king’s businesswoman friend

MADRID (Reuters) – The head of Spanish intelligence was quizzed behind closed doors in parliament on Tuesday over whether public money had been spent on a woman whose friendship with King Juan Carlos has fueled talk of scandal and abdication.

Members of the parliamentary committee which oversees security spending and Felix Sanz of the National Intelligence Centre were bound by official secrecy not to reveal the content of the hearing, which lasted for some two hours in Madrid.

Mar 14, 2013

Spain rules out tougher provisioning rules for banks-official

MADRID, March 14 (Reuters) – Spain is ruling out asking its
banks to set aside more provisions to cover potential losses on
loans on top of writedowns enforced in 2012, a senior official
from the economy ministry said on Thursday.

“Absolutely not,” said the official, who spoke on condition
of anonymity, in response to a question on further provisions.

Mar 14, 2013

Spain’s Jazztel expects boost from fibre optic network

MADRID, March 14 (Reuters) – Spanish broadband provider
Jazztel said on Thursday it expected revenue to jump to
as much as 1.6 billion euros by 2017 from 909 million last year
through investment in a fibre optic network and a focus on
mobile telephone clients.

In a strategic plan it forecast a rise in net profit to
between 180 million and 220 million euros in five years from 62
million last year.

Mar 12, 2013

Spain unveils 3.5 bln euro plan to get young back to work

MADRID, March 12 (Reuters) – Spain pledged 3.5 billion euros
($4.6 billion) over four years on Tuesday to easing mass
unemployment among the country’s youth, as the government tries
to stem a relentless tide of layoffs and lengthening jobless
queues.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy presented 100 different
measures including tax breaks for young freelance workers and
for companies that hire workers in their twenties.

Feb 21, 2013

Swiss bank account adds twist to Spain corruption scandal

MADRID, Feb 21 (Reuters) – When Luis Barcenas, a former
treasurer of Spain’s ruling People’s Party now at the heart of a
growing corruption scandal, deposited 14 million euros in a new
account at his Swiss bank in 2005 the bank asked him to explain
how he came by the money.

Barcenas told Dresdner bank, since acquired by LGT bank, the
funds came from his involvement with eight Spanish and Argentine
companies and from real estate and fine art deals, according to
documents from the examining magistrate’s evidence file in a
Spanish High Court investigation seen by Reuters.

    • About Fiona

      "Fiona Ortiz is Reuters' chief correspondent for Spain. She has also lived and worked as a journalist in Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Portland, Oregon."
    • Follow Fiona