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Greece's Alpha Bank raises enough capital to avoid nationalisation

Greece's Alpha Bank has announced it has raised enough capital to maintain management control, avoiding nationalisation.

The Greek banking system is in turmoil since the economic collapse and Alpha Bank is now the first to stave off full-state ownership.

Last year the government completed a €206 billion ($269 billion) sovereign debt restructuring programme, which aimed to halve the stock of debt the country currently owes private creditors.

The programme hopes to bring a sustainable 120 per cent of gross domestic product by 2020, but has had a massive impact on the capital ratios of Greece's big four banks - Alpha, National Bank of Greece, Eurobank Ergasias and Piraeus Bank SA.

Each of the four banks is now in the process of raising a total of €27.5 billion to boost their capital bases and help restore order to their balance sheets.

Alpha Bank chairman Yannis Costopoulos told the Wall Street Journal: "We are delighted to be the first Greek Bank to meet successfully the Private Sector Contribution in the context of the recapitalization of the Greek banking sector."

By Gary Cooper