Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Italy’s third-largest bank and which also claims to be the world’s oldest bank, needs 1 billion euros to fill a capital shortfall by the end of the month. MPS and other Italian banks are far less exposed than Spanish banks, which have big investments in the commercial property market. “I think that they will keep going, they are the third largest bank in Italy. And they will undoubtedly sell assets; they will go probably to the government who will then buy debt off them through a secondary agency. And I also think that they will be bailed out to a certain degree for the fact that they’ve got Italian government bonds to be redeemed in the next couple of years, which will give them some respite from the pressure they’re under currently,” said Julian Chillingworth, chief investment officer, Rathbones.
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