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Madrileños take in church, football and bank bailouts

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Madrileños take in church, football and bank bailouts


The markets may not have been able yet to react to the eurozone loan to Spanish banks. But on a calm Sunday morning in Madrid some churchgoers did offer an opinion.

There was no hint of the financial turmoil buffeting the country, nor was there any sign of football fever ahead of Spain’s Euro 2012 match against Italy.

Some Catholics agreed the 100 billion euros now available for the banks was a necessary move.

“Do they have to be rescued? For sure. In the US many financial institutions have been rescued. It’s happening all over the world,” said one man outside a church. “What we have to do now is go for those who are responsible, kick them out without a penny. But they are leaving with their pockets full of money. No way! They should face trial and be left with nothing.”

“What concerns me is that those 100 billlion euros are going to be given to the banks. If the problem is Spain and its citizens and not the banks, why is all that money given to the banks? I just can’t understand it,” said an elderly man.

But some in a Madrid café did find grounds for optimism.

“The popular perception is that the situation is getting worse. But also I think that the government measures were worked out and this is not so bad,” said one man.

Miles from home, Spaniards who had travelled to Gdansk in Poland for Euro 2012 were able to put economic worries to one side.

Mariano Rajoy was due to join them – for 90 minutes he too would be spared having to deal with Spain’s economic woes.

Before leaving for Poland, however, the prime minister painted a bleak picture for Spain’s immediate future: the country would stay in recession and more jobs would be lost, he said.

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