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Europe’s Bank Stocks Are Beating the Market

Aid to troubled lenders and expectations of higher interest rates are giving the group a lift.
Data: Bloomberg; graphic by Bloomberg Businessweek

Good news in the euro-area countries that were at the heart of the region’s debt crisis is pushing bank shares higher even as the broader market declines. While lenders globally benefited from speculation of higher interest rates, the Euro Stoxx Banks Index got an additional boost in the past month from receding concern about lender stability after Banco Santander said it will take over Banco Popular Espanol, Italy committed to clean up two failed banks in its biggest rescue on record and the European Union formally approved state aid for Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena.

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