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By Anabela Sérgio (auth.)

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Extra resources for Banking in Portugal

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Finally, the 2008 financial crisis was the origin of the implementation of expansionary policies and consequently led to a worsening of budgetary deficits and to the sovereign debt crisis. The latter crisis affected the Portuguese financial sector and it became evident that several financial institutions needed to be recapitalized. Several questions remained after 2012. Would there be additional difficulties for the financial system arising from default on credit Impact of the Financial Crisis on Portuguese Banks 19 granted due to the non-expansionary policies that had been adopted, together with the stagnation of European markets, making it difficult to strengthen the Portuguese “export-led model”?

This tightening up required banks to reinforce their own capital, demanding share capital increases from shareholders. Not all of the banks were in a position to successfully request from their shareholders new apportions of capital, mainly due to the fact that their accounts and financial status would not allow new shares to be subscribed at par value (in Portugal it is not permitted to subscribe shares below their nominal value). Accordingly, the only possible solution would be a recourse to state investment.

Accordingly, in 2006 BCP formally changed to a two-tier board, thus appointing an executive board of directors and above that a supervisory board (with the functions and powers previously attributed to the superior board). In this model, the shareholders’ meeting elected both the board of directors and the supervisory board, but the supervisory board retained the power to pronounce regarding the definition of strategy and the general policies of the company; the corporate structure of the group; and any decisions that may be deemed strategic due to the amount involved, risk, or any other special characteristics.

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