MADRID Nov 25 Bank of America Merrill Lynch
has bought a small package of loans from Spain's
so-called 'bad bank' Sareb, helping the vehicle to surpass
year-end sales targets, two sources familiar with the situation
said on Monday.
The U.S. bank bought two loans to troubled property company
Metrovacesa, the sources said, adding that the loans were on
Sareb's books at about 80 million euros ($108 million).
Both Sareb, which was created at the end of last year to
cleanse the Spain's rescued banks of their soured property loans
and real estate, and Bank of America declined to comment.
Sareb has sold nearly 900 million euros of loans linked to
major property companies so far this year, though it is unclear
how much it has actually received in payment.
The loans that used to sit on rescued banks' books were
transferred to Sareb at varying discounts. Sareb is 49
percent-owned by the government, with the remainder mainly
shared between Spanish banks that did not need rescuing.
Sareb, which also sold Metrovacesa loans to Deutsche Bank
this month, is selling another package of loans
belonging to real estate group Realia to U.S.
investment firm Fortress and Spain's Azora, one of the sources
The bad bank's total sales this year have reached about 1.7
billion euros, against a 2013 target of 1.5 billion euros. Much
of this is down to houses sold to individuals, though portfolio
sales to professional investors are picking up.
Sareb is still forecast to make a loss for 2013 because of
high financing costs in its first year, which should tail off as
it repays debt with the proceeds of its sales.