October 3, 2019 / 10:28 AM / 11 days ago

Zloty gains after top EU court ruling on Swiss franc mortgages

LONDON, Oct 3 (Reuters) - Poland’s zloty gained 0.7% versus the Swiss franc and 0.4% against both the dollar and the euro on Thursday, after the European Union’s (EU) top court ruled borrowers could have Swiss franc-denominated mortgages converted into zloty.

Speculation before the judgement had caused whipsaw moves in the currency and the country’s bank stocks, but the zloty gained traction as details of the ruling suggested banks would have plenty of time to absorb any foreign currency conversion costs.

The “ECJ’s (European Court of Justice) ruling on Polish FX mortgages is not that harsh,” analysts at Citibank said in a note to clients.

“This is probably going to be extremely gradual. Remember the ECJ decision is pure guidance, and it will be taken into account by the Polish Courts.”

The zloty was last at 3.96 per franc having been at 4 per franc on Wednesday. It also climbed to 4.34 to the euro and almost 3.965 to the dollar.

Attracted by lower interest rates some 700,000 Poles who took out mortgages in foreign currencies, mainly in Swiss francs, are now paying far bigger instalments than they expected after the Swiss franc soared when Switzerland’s central bank abandoned a currency cap. (Reporting by Marc Jones; editing by Saikat Chatterjee)

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