Spain ministry denies that it is delaying key audit into banks

 
Julian Harris
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SPANISH officials yesterday scrambled to downplay reports that claimed the government is delaying an audit into the country’s crisis-struck banking sector.

Two audits have been expected for publication at the end of next month, yet reports yesterday suggested that the government had sought to postpone the publications until September, with the supposed purpose of requiring more detailed analyses.

A spokesman for the Spanish government’s finance ministry later denied the reports, claiming that the audits are still on track to be released towards the end of July.

Yet suspicions had already been raised, further knocking confidence in the troubled Eurozone economy. The news “rocked risk markets”, according to Kathleen Brooks of forex.com. “This is being viewed as negative and a sign that Spain has something to hide (i.e. more bad debts than we currently think),” Brooks said. “Madrid chose the wrong day to bury bad news as bond yields were already above seven per cent first thing.”