CONSOB OKs MPS subordinated bond conversion

Offer opens today to end on December 21

(ANSA) - Milan, December 16 - The CONSOB stock market watchdog has authorized the planned conversion of subordinated bonds into shares of Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS), the troubled Tuscan lender confirmed on Friday.
    Italy's third-largest and oldest bank, received a green light from CONSOB to re-open a bond-to-equity swap offer for 40,000 retail investors who own securities worth roughly two billion euros. MPS was allowed to ask retail investors to swap two billion euros of subordinated bonds for equity starting Friday at 9 am through 2 pm on December 21, the bank also said in the statement.
    The operation is part of a five-billion-euro capital increase plan to be completed by the end of the year, which was approved by the board of the bank on Thursday.
    Shares will be issued at a maximum price of 24.9 euros and a minimum of 1 euro, the bank said. Of these, 35% will be available to the Italian public - of which at least 30% reserved for current shareholders - with 65% reserved for institutional investors. MPS shares rose 1.06% in mid-morning trading Friday.


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