Leadership of revamped Portugal bank to resign

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — The leadership of Portugal's Novo Banco bank says it is resigning — just two months after being named to manage positive assets of the former Banco Espirito following its collapse and division into two parts under Portuguese government intervention.

Chief executive Vitor Bento says in a statement he and two others are stepping down because "our mandate has significantly changed since we began our roles." He did not elaborate but said there was no conflict.

Novo Banco is being prepared to be sold. Bento said in the statement Saturday its operations have been stabilized.

Espirito Santo's problems spooked markets in July and ballooned into Portugal's biggest banking scandal.

The government put up 4.9 billion euros ($6.4 billion) to prevent the bank's collapse, raising questions about how regulators were apparently hoodwinked.