Spanish stock exchange collapses on debt fearsThe Spanish Stock Exchange registered its second biggest drop this year, after investors feared contagion from Greece’s debt crisis, fuelled by rumours that Spain would need 280,000 million euros in aid to meet its obligations.

The Ibex 35 closed with a collapse of 5.41 per cent. The Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said in Brussels that the rumours are “absolute madness”. Despite the desperate attempt by the Spanish PM the market fell below the 10,000 benchmark for the first time since July 2009.

Rating agency Fitch denied any intentions to follow a lowering of Spain’s credit rating. Standard & Poor’s lowered Spanish long-term debt rating from “AA+” to “AA” with a negative outlook on April 28th.

The biggest drop of the day was experienced by Sacyr Vallehermoso, which fell a 10.15%, followed by Telecinco (-8.41%), BBVA (-7.59%) and Banco Popular (-7.34%) while Banco Santander fell 7.08%.

Other European indices also felt the weight of investors confidence drop. Athen’s stocks closed down 6.6 per cent, Milan dropped 4.7 per cent and the Portuguese stock market experienced a loss of 4.21 per cent.