The historic profits of the BBVA bank in the last year have raised the group of United We Can against the rise in mortgages. “We are defending public intervention in the economy to stop variable-rate mortgages,” the Minister of Social Rights, Ione Belarra, said this Wednesday in an interview on TVE, who considered that news like this should “open the eyes” of his government partner to apply a measure like this, which the PSOE already refused to include in the latest anti-crisis shield, approved in December and validated by Congress last week. The second vice president, Yolanda Díaz, has asked in parallel to “freeze mortgages” and “moderate benefits”.
Households reduce their mortgage debt to cushion the rise in rates
The general secretary of Podemos has been defending for several weeks an intervention in the shopping basket to stop the increase in food prices and believes that the Government must also act now to contain the rise in mortgages that the policy has led to of interest rates from the European Central Bank (ECB). “Many privileged people, from banks to large distribution, are making gold with this crisis and a government that wants to take care of the people cannot allow it,” he asserted in statements to La Hora de la 1, asked about the balance sheet of the BBVA Group, which has produced profits of 6,420 million euros in 2022, 38% more than the previous year, according to data announced today by the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV). The result is the best of the group and is even higher than that obtained in 2007, before the bursting of the housing bubble.
These results for Belarra reflect that the work from the Government to reform the Spanish tax system has not gone “as far” as its space would have wanted. “I think that the fact that banks have absolutely extraordinary benefits at a time when people are having a hard time means that we have to continue taking measures,” defended the leader of Podemos, who considers a limit for type mortgages necessary. variable, which are the most affected by the rise of the Euribor.
The second vice president of the Government has been more generic this Wednesday and has asked that mortgages be frozen. “While the rise in the Euribor will make the average mortgage more expensive by €250 per month, BBVA’s profits grow 38% to reach 6,420M, the highest in its history”, wrote the Minister of Labor, who has defended that “the crisis cannot be an excuse to earn more”. “The crisis cannot be an excuse to earn more. Freeze mortgages, moderate benefits ”, she has said.
Podemos’ request to its government partner to limit the rise in mortgages is not new. In September, when the ECB announced for the first time that it would raise rates to try to contain inflation derived from the war in Ukraine, Podemos already proposed that banks have to offer their clients the possibility of taking advantage of a reduction, for a period of time. year, of the variable rate at 0.10%. This measure, they calculated then, could translate into a reduction in the monthly mortgage payment of between 100 and 150 euros for families with economic problems, also avoiding situations of delinquency or non-payment to the banks themselves.
Months later, during the negotiation of the last decree of measures to alleviate the consequences of the war, the Ministry of Belarra raised a cap on variable rate mortgages like the one that has been demanded again this Wednesday. “The priority is to make the PSOE understand that the biggest expense is rent and mortgage payments,” said the secretary of Agenda 2030, Lilith Verstrynge, at the time. The Socialists finally accepted in that negotiation to introduce a limit to the rent in the renewal of the contracts and to maintain the ceiling of 2% in the annual reviews that are usually set to inflation.
The words of the ministers have not sat well within BBVA. The head of the second largest Spanish bank, Carlos Torres, has claimed “the benefits of the market economy” at the entity’s annual press conference and has taken the opportunity to reject both the president’s speech yesterday, Pedro Sánchez, and the position today from the second vice president, Yolanda Díaz. “I do not see that business activity is at odds with society, on the contrary, it adds up,” Torres defended after presenting the bank’s results.