MADRID Dec 21 The European Court of Justice
said on Wednesday it had overturned a Spanish court ruling that
had capped banks' liabilities for so-called floor clauses in
mortgage contracts and asked them to repay customers over the
whole life of the loan.
The ruling, announced in a statement, deals a blow to
Spanish banks that now have to repay customers beyond what they
had lost since May 2013, when Spain's Supreme Court declared
these mortgages, whose rates cannot fall below a benchmark, were
invalid if they had not been presented clearly.
The new charges could total between 3 billion and 4.5
billion euros ($4.68 billion), according to analysts.
The ruling is final and cannot be appealed.
Shares in Spanish banks fell after the ruling was announced,
with Banco Sabadell, down 4.6 percent, leading losses.
($1 = 0.9620 euros)
(Reporting by Jesus Aguado; Editing by Angus Berwick)