ShippingWatch

Media: Major shipping banks to face scrutiny

The European Central Bank has launched a review of banks' lending to the hard-pressed shipping sector, several sources tell Reuters. The banks could be forced to earmark more capital and increase loan loss provisions for the sector.

Photo: HSH Nordbank

Banks with large loans to the shipping industry could face pressure from another front than just the struggling shipping sector. According to news agency Reuters, the European Central Bank (ECB) is in the process of scrutinizing banks' shipping loans, which have in recent years weighed down the banks' books, five sources familiar with the situation tell Reuters.

Late last week, a series of European banks received an email from ECB requesting details about the banks' loans to shipping and a status on their loan loss provisions for the sector. According to one source, the email represents the initial step in a broader review of loans to the sector. The ECB declines to comment on the story to Reuters.

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