Greek banks hit by debt haircuts

Greek lenders Alpha and Eurobank yesterday reported nine-month losses due to impairments from a bond swap agreed in July and said they would adjust their capital raising plans after a new debt exchange plan is finalised. The two lenders have agreed to merge to form one of the largest banks in southeast Europe. Greek banks are trying to cope with rising bad debt provisions and a shrinking deposit base as the austerity-hit country struggles through its fourth straight year of economic contraction.