For many Spanish banking users, it is almost unimaginable to think that banks could abuse their lack of knowledge to sell them products that are so complex in themselves and that require more than familiarity with the financial sector than could be expected of the general public.
However, in recent years we have seen how the courts have protected thousands of users from banking malpractice. Some examples are preference shares, subordinated debentures, mortgage loans with floor clauses or IRPH and even off-plan homebuyers who never received a bank guarantee. Now it is the turn of those affected by Santander Securities.
In the last four months of 2007 – once again during the economic crisis – Banco Santander decided to put its Valores Santander product on sale. This was an issue of bonds convertible into shares worth 7 billion euros with which the bank wanted to finance the purchase of ABM Amro. The product offered investors a high interest rate of 7.5% APR in the first year and, from the second year onwards, a remuneration of Euribor +2.75%. This attractive interest rate was used as a selling point.
However, what was really being marketed was a future purchase of shares with the possibility of voluntary exchanges on the dates decided by the financial institution and a mandatory exchange in 2012 in which investors’ savings would be converted into Banco Santander shares at a fixed price of 12.96 euros. At the time, the market price of the shares of this financial institution was 5.9 euros, so hundreds of people lost 55% of their savings.
In addition to this lack of transparency in the marketing of the Valores Santander, the vast majority of those who decided to take out the Valores Santander were generally savers without in-depth financial knowledge, so it was difficult for them to be aware of the complexity of the product and the risks they were assuming, information which, moreover, did not appear in any of the advertising materials used by the Bank to sell its product.
For these reasons, many courts have ruled in favour of savers, declaring the contract null and void and, consequently, obliging the financial institution to return the amount invested.
If you are one of the thousands of people affected by Valores Santander, send us the contract you signed and the securities statement to administración@bufetesalmeron.com or call us on 954 536 038 and our team of expert lawyers at Bufete Salmerón will evaluate your case within 24 hours without obligation. More than 10 years of experience in banking and financial law are our guarantee.