Spain: 5 banks downgraded, Bankia seeks 19 billion euros in aid
It's not looking good for the Spanish banking system. Standard & Poor's just slashed the credit ratings of five banks and said the country is headed into a double-dip recession. One of them, Bankia, just asked the government for 19 billion euros in aid - a roughly $23.8 billion boost.
That makes it the largest bank bailout in Spain's history. Combined with escalating concerns that Greece is about to execute its so-called Grexit from the euro currency, the news is doing nothing to alleviate the heightened anxiety in the euro zone.
Standard & Poor's, which caused market shockwaves last summer when it downgraded U.S. debt, said the Spanish banking sector was vulnerable to turbulence in capital markets because it relies heavily on foreign funding.