February 28, 2018 / 10:27 AM / 2 years ago

Italy's Monte Paschi could play role in banking consolidation

FILE PHOTO: A man walks in front of the Monte dei Paschi bank in Siena, central Italy, January 29, 2016. REUTERS/Max Rossi

MILAN (Reuters) - Italy’s Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena (BMPS.MI) could play a role in the consolidation of Italy’s banking sector under the right conditions, a top Treasury official said on Wednesday.

Fabrizio Pagani said on the sidelines of a conference it was to be hoped that Italy’s banks became involved in a process of consolidation.

But he said he was not aware of any ongoing merger talks involving Monte dei Paschi which last year was rescued by the state.

When asked who the Tuscan bank could tie up with, Pagani said “it’s too early to say”.

Economy Minister Pier Carlo Padoan told La Stampa newspaper on Saturday Monte dei Paschi was on the right track but that there were no plans to merge it with a rival.

Reporting by Elisa Anzolin, writing by Stephen Jewkes; editing by Agnieszka Flak

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