Spanish bank's shares hit on $1.3B withdrawal report

The Bankia bank headquarters is seen in Madrid, Monday May 7, 2012. Spain's prime minister said Monday the government will likely present important bank clean-up measures this week to clear up doubts about the solvency of the sector, a key source of worry over whether Spain might need a bailout. Rajoy's comments came after El Pais newspaper said the government was preparing to help out troubled lender Bankia SA. Spain's real estate bubble burst in 2008, saddling banks with enormous amounts of bad loans as unemployment rose and people could not pay their mortgages. The Bank of Spain says the sector has about 175 billion euros ($230 billion) in "problematic" holdings. Bankia is known to be among the worst hit. (AP Photo/Paul White) Paul White

(AP) MADRID - Shares in Bankia, the recently nationalized Spanish bank, are plunging by more than 20 percent on a local report that customers have withdrawn more than 1 billion euro ($1.27 billion) since the state took it over last week.

The shares were off 16 percent Thursday at 1.39 euro after falling as much as 27 percent during the morning.

The newspaper El Mundo reported it had obtained access to data presented at a Bankia board meeting Wednesday which said depositors had withdrawn 1 billion euro since last Wednesday, the day the nationalization was announced. The bank is Spain's fourth largest and is heavily exposed to Spain's collapsed property market.

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Bankia officials were not immediately available to comment on the newspaper report. Bankia was formed through a merger of seven troubled regional savings banks.

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