A new servitude: Homeowners across central Europe see dreams vanish with Swiss franc loans

February 10, 2015 6:45 AM

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A new servitude: Homeowners across central Europe see dreams vanish with Swiss franc loans

In this Feb. 5, 2015 picture Dorota Smetek, 30, stands in the kitchen of her small one-bedroom apartment that she bought with a mortgage in Swiss francs, in Poznan, Poland. Smetek and hundreds of thousands of other people across central Europe regret the day they took out such loans in the boom years before the crisis of 2008. The franc has risen dramatically since then, making their monthly installments in local currencies also dramatically higher. Their pain increased after the Swiss national bank unpegged the franc from the euro on Jan. 15, causing a new surge in the Swiss currency.(AP Photo/Pawel Jaskólka) (The Associated Press)

FILE - In this Feb. 8, 2015 file picture a child from a Romanian family that has contracted a Swiss francs loan holds a paper that translates "The National Bank knew the banks were lying to us" during a protest outside the parliament building in Bucharest, Romania. On Jan. 15, the Swiss national ban...

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