February 7, 2019 / 5:01 AM / 4 months ago

Italy - Factors to watch on Feb. 7

MILANO, Feb 7 (Reuters) - The following factors could affect Italian markets on Thursday.

Reuters has not verified the newspaper reports, and cannot vouch for their accuracy. New items are marked with (*).

For a complete list of diary events in Italy please click on .

ECONOMY

ISTAT releases December retail sales (0900 GMT).

Bank of Italy releases January data on Target 2 liabilities and European Central Bank funding to Italian banks.

The International Monetary Fund on Wednesday criticised Italy’s plans to lower the retirement age, saying they would cut the country’s growth potential and add to an already high pension bill.

The European Commission will slash its 2019 growth forecast for Italy to 0.2 percent from its previous estimate of 1.2 percent given in November, a source at the European Commission said on Wednesday, confirming an earlier report by Ansa news agency.

DEBT

Treasury announces sale of 12-month BOT bills, with relative amounts to be auctioned on Feb. 12.

Investor demand for a new 30-year Italian bond reached 41 billion euros ($47 billion) on Wednesday, allowing the Treasury to raise 8 billion euros.

UNICREDIT

Italy’s biggest bank UniCredit ended the year on a high, posting a better-than-expected fourth-quarter net profit, excluding an 887 million euros one-off non-cash tax boost.

UniCredit said on Wednesday General Manager Gianni Franco Papa would step down effective June 1 as part of a wider senior management reorganisation at the Italian lender. The total package agreed with Papa for the termination of his employment, including an indemnity and severance payment, amounts to around 3.658 million euros, the bank added.

Italy’s biggest bank by assets also said its new strategic plan for 2020-23 would be unveiled in London on Dec. 3.

BANCO BPM

Italy’s fourth-largest bank Banco BPM posted a fourth-quarter loss of 584 million euros ($664 million) on Wednesday after writing down impaired loans for nearly 1 billion euros in the period to ease a large disposal.

The lender expects to reduce the cost of funding this year even if the bank were to seize market opportunities to issue senior debt, its CEO said.

Italy’s Credito Fondiario was appointed master and special servicer in Banco BPM’s 7.4 billion euro bad loan securitisation.

Banco BPM is not considering any consolidation options, its CEO said.

The lender’s internal workout can allow bank to reduce its impaired loans’ net book value to 200-400 million euros in 6-8 years, its CEO said.

The lender said the price of its “ACE” bad loan sale was 23.6 percent of gross book value, excluding write-offs.

Banco BPM’s gross impaired loan ratio stood at 10.8 percent at the end of 2018, taking into account the “ACE” bad loan sale, Reuters calculations based on a company slide showed.

BANCA CARIGE

After the interest shown by Apollo, the funds Attestor Capital and Varde Partners are also interested in the bank and could play a role in its recapitalisation, Il Messaggero said. Fonspa is a front runner to manage the 3.2 billion euros of bad debts.

(*) BPER BANCA, UNIPOL

Unipol will sign off on Thursday the sale of its banking unit to BPER for 200-260 mln euros, Il Sole 24 Ore said.

(*) CREVAL

Creval exposure to Italian government bonds is falling, and is now at 5 billion euros, the CFO said.

TELECOM ITALIA

The talks between Telecom Italia and fiber infrastructure group Open Fiber will also involve ownership considerations, Il Sole 24 Ore said.

Elliott held a stake of 9.547 percent in the phone group as of Jan. 31, a filing with market regulator Consob showed.

ENEL

Enel said on Wednesday its core earnings last year rose 3.8 percent, boosted by stronger margins in its renewable businesses in Italy, Spain and South America.

Enel Green Power has started construction of South America’s largest wind farm in Brazil, it said on Wednesday. Enel will invest around 3 billion reais ($810.77 million) in the construction of the plant, it added.

(*) ASCOPIAVE

The regional utility will hold a board meeting next Monday to kick off the process to sell its retail client business, Il Sole 24 Ore said.

CREDITO VALTELLINESE

The lender reported a full-year net profit of 31.7 million euros.

Conference call on FY results (0700 GMT).

MEDIOBANCA

Board meeting on H1 results, followed by conference call (1300 GMT).

BANCA GENERALI

Board meeting on FY results (anticipation).

BUZZI UNICEM

Board meeting on preliminary FY results.

CNH INDUSTRIAL

Board meeting on FY results, followed by conference call (1430 GMT).

FCA

Board meeting on FY results, followed by conference call (1300 GMT).

BANCA POPOLARE DI SONDRIO

The European Central Bank has set a minimum CET 1 ratio for the bank at 9.25 percent, the lender said on Wednesday.

UBI BANCA

Board meeting on FY results.

UNIPOL

Board meeting on FY results.

UNIPOLSAI

Board meeting on FY results.

BANCA MONTE DEI PASCHI DI SIENA

Board meeting on FY results.

AUTOGRILL

Board meeting on FY results.

BANCA PROFILO

Board meeting on preliminary FY results.

BANCO DI DESIO E DELLA BRIANZA

Board meeting on FY results.

CREDITO EMILIANO

Board meeting on FY results.

PIQUADRO

Board meeting on Q3 results.

ALP.I

Ordinary and extraordinary shareholders’ meetings (1000 GMT).

DIARY

Rome, UEFA holds 43rd ordinary congress (annual report, election of UEFA President, UEFA Executive Committee, FIFA Council), followed by news conference by UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin (0830 GMT).

Milan, first of two-day conference “Connext”, ceremony with Google Business and Operations EMEA President Matt Brittin (0900 GMT).

Milan, Cattolica University holds conference on “Companies and the stock exchange. Possible Synergies for Growth” with Bank of Italy Milan Director Giuseppe Sopranzetti (0800 GMT).

For Italian market data and news, click on codes in brackets:

20 biggest gainers (in percentage)............

20 biggest losers (in percentage).............

FTSE IT allshare index

FTSE Mib index........

FTSE Allstars index...

FTSE Mid Cap index....

Block trades..........

Stories on Italy...... IT-LEN

For pan-European market data and news, click on codes in brackets: European Equities speed guide................... FTSEurofirst 300 index.............................. DJ STOXX index...................................... Top 10 STOXX sectors........................... Top 10 EUROSTOXX sectors...................... Top 10 Eurofirst 300 sectors................... Top 25 European pct gainers....................... Top 25 European pct losers........................ Main stock markets: Dow Jones............... Wall Street report ..... Nikkei 225............. Tokyo report............ FTSE 100............... London report........... Xetra DAX............. Frankfurt market stories CAC-40................. Paris market stories... World Indices..................................... Reuters survey of world bourse outlook......... Western European IPO diary.......................... European Asset Allocation........................ Reuters News at a Glance: Equities............... Main currency report:............................... ($1 = 3.7002 reais) (Reporting By Viviana Venturi)

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