Bank aid arrives in Spain

Spain says $51.3 billion aid approved by European authorities for troubled banks has arrived

Associated Press

MADRID (AP) -- Spain's economy ministry says €39.5 billion ($51.3 billion) in bailout aid approved by European authorities for troubled Spanish banks has arrived.

A ministry spokeswoman said Wednesday the money is now in the hands of a state-run fund set up to help those entities worst hit by the property market collapse in 2008.

The money is expected to be distributed to the banks over the coming days.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity in keeping with ministry regulations.

The funds are part of a €100 billion rescue package earmarked for Spain by the other 16 European Union countries that use the euro. The package is designed to ease the pressure on the government so it can concentrate on managing national finances and avoid a full-blown sovereign bailout.

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