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(AP) - DEFUSING THE THREAT: The Netherlands nationalized its fourth-largest bank on Friday, injecting $3 billion into SNS Reaal NV to head off any chance of a messy collapse that would threaten the country's economy and financial system.

DEFICIT EFFECT: The cost means Netherlands' budget deficit in 2013 will be higher than the 3 percent allowed under European Union rules unless the Cabinet comes up with more unpopular austerity measures.

THE BANK: SNS has insurance and banking operations, including about 10 percent of Dutch retail deposits. Its decline occurred over several years as sliding property values eroded its real estate loans portfolio.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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