Spanish, Italian big banks purged bad loans in 2019

Top lenders in Italy and Spain – two eurozone member states hit hardest by the region's financial crisis – continued to shed non-performing loans (NPLs) in 2019.

The two Italian and three Spanish lenders counted among the world's largest 75 banks cut their net NPL ratios by an average of 56 basis points in 2019, to 3.1%.

Bulge-bracket Spanish banks BBVA, CaixaBank and Santander had end-2019 NPL ratios of 3.8%, 3.6% and 3.3%, respectively. Big Italian lenders Intesa Sanpaolo and UniCredit had

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