THE EPIC OF CHF BORROWERS CONTINUES
BURSA 31.01.2017

EMILIA OLESCU (translated by Cosmin Ghidoveanu)
 
     * The High Court the complaint concerning the freezing of the CHF exchange rate denied as inadmissible, in a case against Banca Transilvania
     * Stan Târnoveanu: "The High Court of Cassation and Justice did not resolve the complaint, it has left the decision to the court"
     * Borrowers' lawyers: "A new slap in the face to consumers, their time has been wasted"
       CHF borrowers (CHF) keep their optimism and wait anxiously on any court ruling. Except their expectations have been denied lately, as many courts, as well as the Constitutional Court have postponed or denied as inadmissible various lawsuits or notifications that were very important to all the cases involving loan contracts denominated in Swiss Francs.
     That is also the case to the long awaited ruling that was supposed to be rendered yesterday, by the High Court of Cassation and Justice (ÎCCJ), which also rejected as inadmissible in court the notification formulated by the County Court of Dolj in a lawsuit demanding the freezing of the CHF exchange rate, in a case brought by a borrower against Banca Transilvania (which acquired Volksbank).
     The ruling rendered yesterday means that the ICCJ has declined to resolve the case, leaving the decision up to the county court, according to lawyer Stan Târnoveanu, senior partner at Law firm Zamfirescu Racoți & Partners.
     He told us: "The requirements were not met by those who notified the ICCJ, namely the County Court of Dolj, and the questions did not concern the clarification of law issues".
     The borrowers' lawyers expressed their displeasure with the ruling of the ICCJ. Călin Cuculis said "the ruling is a slap in the face of the borrowers".
     Lawyer Alexandra Burada wrote, on her Facebook page: "Whatever the courts don't like is inadmissible. If the issue gets thorny... it is inadmissible. If it happens to involve the people too...it is definitely inadmissible".
     "It was all a waste of time", lawyer Gheorghe Piperea concluded, who stressed the fact that the ICCJ ruled that the complaint did not concern a new issue.
     The High Court was expected to rule on the manner of interpreting certain laws which consumers were invoking in their lawsuits requesting the freezing of the CHF exchange rate. The ruling of the ÎCCJ was supposed to lead to the unification of the judiciary practice in the lawsuits requesting the freezing of the exchange rate, as the ruling was supposed to be mandatory for all the courts in the country.
     The county court of Dolj had sent in three questions to the High Court:
     "1. Whether the provisions of art. 45 and art. 48 of the Law no. 296/2004 concerning the Consumers' Code, art. 18 of Ordinance no. 21 of August 21st 1992 concerning the protection of consumers and art. 6 letter b of the Law no. 289 of June 24th 2004 concerning the legal status of consumer loans are part of the legal obligation of the bank in the pre-contractual phase of information concerning the risk of currency exchange;
     2. Whether the provisions of art. 1578 of the Civil Code of 1864, which consecrates the principle of monetary nominalism are applicable in a cause which claims that, even though the loan was taken out in CHF, the plaintiffs did not have the ability to actually withdraw and use the currency in question, because said currency only existed on paper at the moment of the drawing of the loan;
     3. Whether the provisions of art. paragraph 6 of the Law no. 193/2000 concerning abusive clauses of contracts concluded between professionals and consumers make it mandatory for banks to insert into foreign currency loan agreements a clear and intelligible clause and concerning currency risk".
     Despite yesterday's ruling by the ICCJ, the debtors will have to keep waiting, and in early February, three other decisions of major importance for the lawsuits brought in court requesting the freezing of the CHF exchange rate.
     The first, on February 2nd, is the ruling of the court in the lawsuit brought by lawyer Gheorghe Piperea against nine banks that have granted that type of loans.
     The second, on February 7th, is the ruling of the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR), which is set to issue a ruling on the Law of the Conversion of CHF loans at the exchange rate, passed by the Parliament which the Cioloș government and disputed with the CCR.
     The third ruling is expected from the European Court of Justice (CJEU), which is going to respond, on February 9th, to the questions send by the courts of Oradea in a case concerning the freezing of the exchange rate.
     In this latter case, the response of Mr. Răsvan Horațiu Radu, our representative in the European Court of Justice, sent at the request of the CJEU following the enquiry of the court of Oradea, states that "the obligation of repaying using a foreign currency (the same that the loan was contracted in), while the risk of that currency's fluctuation is borne exclusively by the consumer, leads to an uncertain situation for the latter. More specifically, the costs that they need to bear could increase, apparently without an upper cap, and the lender does not have the obligation to provide any service in return". The CJEU representative also thinks that the insertion of clauses concerning the bearing of the currency risk in its entirety exclusively by the consumer, without contractual mechanisms in order to mitigate that risk, denotes the creation of an imbalance between the rights and the obligations of the parties, from the very conclusion of the contract.
     Răsvan Horațiu Radu says, in his answer, obtained by the BURSA newspaper: "The fact that the circumstance that causes that risk to materialize only occurs at a subsequent time and is expressed through the creation of an imbalance between services does not mean that the significant imbalance between the rights and obligations does not already exist at the time of the conclusion of the contract. (...) It follows from the situation noted by the court that the bank had the possibility to use the fluctuations on the currency market, which creates a risky context for the consumer".
     According to law firm Piperea și Asociații, the three questions that the CJEU is set to answer are:
     "1. Should article 3 paragraph (1) of Directive 93/131 be construed to mean that the significant imbalance between the rights and the obligations of the parties that follows from the contract must be analyzed strictly in relation to the time of the conclusion of the contract or does it include the situation where, throughout the unfolding of a contract with successive execution, the service of the consumer becomes excessively onerous compared to the moment of the conclusion of the contract due to significant fluctuations of the currency exchange rate?
     2. According to the interpretation of article 4 paragraph (2) of the Directive 93/13, should the clear and intelligible nature of a contractual clause be construed to mean that said contractual clause must stipulate only the reasons that led to that clause being included in the contract and in its operating mechanism or should it also stipulate all of its possible consequences which can cause a variation in the price paid by the consumer, such as the currency risk, and should it be considered, from the point of view of Directive 93/13/CEE that the obligation of the bank to inform the customer at the time of the granting of the loan applies exclusively to the lending terms, respectively the interest rates, commissions, collaterals which are the responsibility of the borrower, and that the possibility or a foreign currency strengthening or weakening may not be included in this obligation?
     3. Should article 4 paragraph (2) of the Directive 93/13/CEE be construed to mean that the terms «the main object of the contract» and «the adequate nature of the price or remuneration, on one hand, against the services or goods supplied in exchange for the former, on the other hand» cover a clause stipulated in a loan agreement concluded in a foreign currency between a provider and a consumer and which has not been negotiated individually to be «repaid in the same currency»?"
     The law firm mentions that the trial of most the lawsuits in Romania (approximately 3000) which concern requiring lenders to convert CHF loans in lei, at the exchange rate at the time the loan was taken out has been suspended, in waiting for the solution of the CJEU.
     According to specialists, CJEU rulings are mandatory for the Romanian courts. 
 

 
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Aceeasi sectiune (English Section)
AFTER THE TRANSACTION BETWEEN BANCA TRANSILVANIA AND BANCPOST
PATRICIA SUÁREZ RAMÍREZ, THE PRESIDENT OF THE ASSOCIATION OF FINANCIAL CONSUMERS OF SPAIN:
THE QUICK RISE OF THE INDEX WHICH SETS THE TREND FOR INTEREST RATES ON LOANS DENOMINATED IN LEI ISN'T STOPPING
THE PARLIAMENT IS ASKING FOR INFORMATION CONCERNING THE INVESTIGATIONS WHICH OMV PETROM HAS BEEN SUBJECTED TO
Actualitate - vezi toate știrile mai jos.
Strategia Naţională Anticorupţie, 11:51
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     Președintele Comisiei speciale pe legile Justiției, Florin Iordache, a precizat, astăzi, că înființarea Secției speciale privind investigarea infracțiunilor din Justiție are rolul de a lua presiunea de pe judecători, potrivit News.ro.
     -------
     Comisia parlamentară specială pentru legile Justiției, condusă de social-democratul Florin Iordache, a adoptat astăzi, cu 14 voturi "pentru" și 5 voturi "împotrivă", un raport de admitere pentru legea 304/2004 privind organizarea judiciară, urmând ca actul normativ să fie înaintat plenului Camerei Deputaților, potrivit News.ro.  detalii
Politică, 07:46
UPDATE
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11.12.2017
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     Penultima ședință de tranzacționare a săptămânii a fost marcată de revenirea tuturor indicilor pe plus, aprecierea acestora fiind ușoară, între 0,02%, pentru BET și BET-Plus, și 0,24%, pentru BET-FI.  detalii
08.12.2017
BURSELE DIN LUME
     Bursele din Europa au crescut ieri, investitorii fiind optimiști cu privire la faptul că Marea Britanie va reuși să ajungă la un acord cu UE, care va deschide calea lansării negocierilor pe comerț...  detalii
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BVB
     * Rulaj de 8,3 milioane de euro, în ședința de miercuri
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BURSELE DIN LUME
     Bursele din Europa au urmat un curs negativ ieri, cele mai mari pierderi fiind înregistrate în sectorul tehnologic și cel minier, după declinul consemnat pe Wall Street în ziua anterioară.  detalii
Cotații Internaționale

Prognoza Meteo
Vezi harta temperaturilor
harta temperaturilor
     11.12.2017 
     Prognoza pentru România
     Vremea se va încălzi din nou în cea mai mare parte a țării. Cerul va fi variabil, cu înnorări mai ales în prima parte a zilei, cu precădere în nord-vest, unde vor mai fi precipitații slabe, ploi în zonele joase și mixte în Munții Apuseni și în nordul Carpaților Orientali, ce pot favoriza depunerile de polei. Vântul va prezenta intensificări la munte, mai susținute pe creste, unde vitezele vor depăși 80...90 km/h și zăpada va fi spulberată, dar local și în regiunile vestice cu rafale de 50...55 km/h, în timp ce în restul zonelor va sufla slab și moderat, cu intensificări izolate. Temperaturile maxime se vor încadra în general între 2 și 12 grade, iar cele minime între -7...-6 grade în depresiunile Carpaților Orientali și 7...9 grade în Dealurile de Vest. Pe arii restrânse va fi ceață.
     Prognoza pentru București
     Vremea se va încălzi, astfel că maxima termică va fi de 9...10 grade, iar minima de 0...1 grad. Cerul va fi variabil, iar vântul va sufla slab până la moderat.
      
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English Section
08.12.2017
     The hope of an accession as quick as possible by Romania to the Eurozone was dealt a heavy blow precisely on the National Day.  details
06.12.2017
AFTER THE DRAFT HAD BEEN PUBLISHED IN OCTOBER
     * Gheorghe Șimon: "The royalties law will be voted in the Parliament in February next year"
     * Ministry of the Economy: "We will establish royalties which are fair both for the state as well as for the business sector"
     * Daniel Cătălin Zamfir, PNL: "I found out that there are companies that have never, take note, never paid even one leu in royalties to the Romanian state, even though they have been exploiting resources for over 20 years"
     * Last year, the Court of Auditors announced that Romania lost 1.4 billion dollars, because the ANRM established the oil royalties in a flawed manner
       The entire legislative package concerning the regulation of the system for the regulation of the mineral, oil and hydromineral resources will be revised and will be voted in the Parliament in February next year, Economics minister, Gheorghe Șimon, announced yesterday, after the debates of the Economic, Industries and Services Commission of the Senate.  details
28.11.2017
AFTER THE TRANSACTION BETWEEN BANCA TRANSILVANIA AND BANCPOST
     * Customers with borrowers in CHF from Bancpost are waiting for a conversion program with a discount
       After moving to second spot last year in the domestic banking system, through the acquisition of Volksbank, Banca Transilvania (BT) ends up on equal footing with BCR, taking over Bancpost, from Greek group Eurobank.  details
27.11.2017
     * MAKE, BURSA: "I want the new CEO of the BSE to participate in the drafting of a new strategy for the development of capital market"
       On Thursday night, "BURSA" received the Award for the promoting of high standards of corporate governance on the capital market, as part of the 2017 Capital Market Awards Gala, organized by the Association of Brokers.  details
24.11.2017
     * Ciprian Păltineanu and Adrian Tănase, scheduled for meetings with the board
     * Both candidates seem to be closet o the group in the shareholder structure of the BSE
     * George Butunoiu is in charge of recruitment
     * The waiting list may include a few foreigners, including former BRD executive Jacek Panczyk
       According to some market sources, banker Ciprian Păltineanu and Adrian Tănase, Chief Investment Officer at NN Pensii România, will hold interviews in the beginning of next week with the Board of the BSE, after Ludwik Sobolewski's term expired in the summer.  details
23.11.2017
PATRICIA SUÁREZ RAMÍREZ, THE PRESIDENT OF THE ASSOCIATION OF FINANCIAL CONSUMERS OF SPAIN:
     * The head of the ASUFIN: "The ruling of the Supreme Court of Spain in which the Andriciuc case has been invoked will be part of the Spanish case law and the lower courts will be required to apply the principle that underlies this decision"
       The ruling issued by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJUE) in the Andriciuc versus Banca Românească case represents a great advantage for Spanish debtors, said Patricia Suarez Ramírez, the president of the Association of Financial Consumers in Spain (ASUFIN), as part of a response recently sent to BURSA.  details
22.11.2017
     * Dragnea: "Those who are against me are hiding behind institutions"
       The president of the Chamber of Deputies, Liviu Dragnea, leader of the PSD, thinks that his enemies are hiding behind some institutions, "they crucify people", and the real stake is "the blocking of the Laws concerning the Justice system".  details
21.11.2017
     The Council of the European Union and the European Parliament have sent to the ECB, in the beginning of this year, a request concerning the sending of some proposals to revise the framework for managing crises.  details
20.11.2017
ANPC STRIKES AGAIN
     * BCR: "Ongoing contracts no longer contain the clauses that have been subjected to examination"
     * Sources: "ANPC has 6 lawsuits against BCR, which will lead to enormous losses for Erste Bank if BCR loses in court"
       After forcing Raiffeisen Bank to eliminate the unfair practices from the loan agreements, the National Consumer Protection Authority (ANPC) strikes again, this time the biggest bank in the system. BCR lost in the court of first instance, against the ANPC, in a class action lawsuit concerning abusive lending clauses.  details
16.11.2017
THE QUICK RISE OF THE INDEX WHICH SETS THE TREND FOR INTEREST RATES ON LOANS DENOMINATED IN LEI ISN'T STOPPING
     The 3-month ROBOR rate, which is used to calculate the interest rates, the majority of the loans denominated in lei, has jumped past the 2% psychological level, and yesterday reached 2.06%, up from Tuesday's 1.92%, according to data from the NBR.  details
16.11.2017
THE PARLIAMENT IS ASKING FOR INFORMATION CONCERNING THE INVESTIGATIONS WHICH OMV PETROM HAS BEEN SUBJECTED TO
     * Minister Toma Petcu, former ministers Răzvan Nicolescu and Victor Grigorescu, the representatives of the state in the executive structure of OMV Petrom and Mihai Busuioc, the president of the Court of Auditors were heard today in the Investigation Commission
       The executives of OMV Petrom mentioned, in a letter addressed to the parliament, the existence of four lawsuits brought by the National Energy Regulation Authority (ANRE) and of seven audits by the Authority, between 2012-2017, as the recent request for information by the Commission for the Investigation of the activity of the ANRE targeted a period of 12 years, from 2015 to 2017.  details
14.11.2017
THE EURO AT AN ALL-TIME HIGH
     * Vasilescu: "We cannot say that the currency market has gone off the rails, the exchange rate has moved 4 bani in 4 days"
     * "Perhaps it is a simple coincidence the fact that on November 8th was approved the Emergency Ordinance of the Fiscal Code and it was also on that day that the Euro rose past 4.6 lei", said Mr. Vasilescu
       The leu yesterday reached a historic low against the Euro, 4.6495 lei/Euro, up 1.05 over the previous meeting, marking the fourth day where the exchange rate was above 4.6 lei.  details
13.11.2017
     In October, the Romanian Commercial Bank, through Schoenherr și Asociații, has submitted, with the County Court of Bihor, a request for the insolvency of the European Drinks group, owned by the Micula brothers. That group includes: European Drinks, Transilvania General Import-Export, European Food, Starmill SRL, Scandic Distilleries SA, Rieni Drinks.  details
10.11.2017
DUMITRU COSTIN (BNS):
     * The executives of OMV Petrom, summoned to appear in the Parliament for the third time
     * Sevil Shhaideh and Radu-Spiridon Cojocaru, the representatives of the state on the Supervisory Board of OMV Petrom, also called in for hearings
     * Costin: "We have notified the Audit Body of the Prime-Minister"
       The management of OMV Petrom, namely Mrs. Mariana Gheorghe, as well as the representatives of the Romanian state on the Supervisory Board of OMV Petrom, Sevil Shhaideh and Radu-Spiridon Cojocaru will be invited to appear in the hearings on the Investigation Commission for the activity of the ANRE, the members of the Commission decided on Thursday.  details
09.11.2017
     * The fear that wages will drop is unjustified
       The government's proposal to transfer the social security contributions exclusively to the employee is not at all a social-democratic measure and not even one of redistribution, rather it is one of an ultra-liberal nature, which leaves the employer in the unique position in Europe of not contributing in no way whatsoever to the social security systems (retirement and unemployment) or healthcare.  details
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