Spain plans guidelines for banks to help poor homeowners settle their debts and end a wave of humiliating evictions brought on by the economic crisis, the economy minister said yesterday. Minister Luis de Guindos told parliament the rules would allow homeowners to write off their mortgages by surrendering their home to the bank and spare them from further debts. Social associations have demanded reforms to end a wave of evictions of families left jobless by the current economic crisis, brought on by the collapse of a housing boom in 2008. “This situation is a human tragedy,” de Guindos said. “The government is very sensitive to the situation created by the large number of evictions which are affecting a large number of citizens.”

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