Confirmation of the break in negotiations between Mef, the majority shareholder of MPS with a 64% stake, and UniCredit – a break that was rumored since yesterday but also in recent days – came today, Sunday 24 October, with a joint note from the Ministry of Economy and Finance and the bank managed by Andrea Orcel:
“Despite the efforts made by both parties, UniCredit and the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) communicate the interruption of negotiations relating to the potential acquisition of a defined perimeter of Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena ”, reads the press release issued from Via XX Settembre and Piazza Gae Aulenti.
According to Reuters, a bone of contention would have been the request of UniCredit, to the State, to inject into the Sienese bank new capital of € 6.3 billion: a request considered unjustified by the Treasury, according to the source consulted by the news agency.
The subject of the dispute is also the value of the perimeter that UniCredit would have been willing to incorporate: according to Andrea Orcel, CEO of Piazza Gae Aulenti, the fair value of the assets would have been around 1.3 billion euros, compared to a value between 3.6 billion and 4.8 billion calculated by the Mef.
Another Reuters article reports what was said by another source:
Orcel would have demanded a commitment from the state, over 7 billion euros, that the Treasury would have deemed “Too punitive” for Italian taxpayers, after € 5.4 billion had been paid by the same taxpayers in 2017, when MPS was bailed out with a precautionary recapitalization launched by the Italian government after the approval of Brussels.
So he commented on the rumors about the breakdown of negotiations between the Treasury and UniCredit, which had already circulated yesterday, the general secretary of Fabi, Lando Maria Sileoni:
“Whatever happens, it must be clear from now on that no one should even think that the match can remain in the hands of the union. We will not accept staff cuts except through early retirement on a voluntary basis and it must be clear that we will oppose, with all the means at our disposal, any attempt at social butchery ”.
“Press indiscretions – commented Sileoni before the official joint press release issued by Mef and UniCredit today – report that the negotiation between Mef and Unicredit relating to Monte dei Paschi di Siena would be skipped. We will see if it has jumped or not, just as we will see if there will be six months of extension, compared to 31 December 2021, for the State’s exit from the capital of Mps, an extension that someone will have to officially ask for and that the European Union and the ECB will have to agree. And we will also see if all this hullabaloo is just a show of strength between the players in the game and in this negotiation ”.
Politics in fibrillation: Lega pulls straight against Letta
Meanwhile, the made in Italy policy is in fibrillation, hunting for the culprit:
“What solution does Mr Letta, elected a few days ago in Siena, propose? Months, years, billions and jobs lost due to the PD ”, according to Lega sources.
They also made themselves heard Luigi Marattin, President of the VI Finance Committee of the Chamber, e Luciano D’Alfonso, President of the VI Finance and Treasury Commission of the Senate, of Italia Viva:
“Following the press release from the Ministry of Economy and Finance announcing the stop to negotiations with Unicredit Spa for the sale of the stake in the Monte dei Paschi di Siena bank currently in the hands of the public sector, in line with the commitments undertaken by Minister Daniele Franco at the hearing on 4 August, we ask that the Minister of Economy and Finance, or the Director General of the Treasury, promptly report to the Finance Committees of the Chamber and Senate on the situation relating to MPS and its future prospects “.
He also has his say on Twitter the secretary of Più Europa and undersecretary for foreign affairs, Benedetto Della Vedova:
“The failure of the Mef-UniCredit negotiations for Monte dei Paschi is not good news, even if it shows the government’s willingness to seek the best possible solution. Those who cheered for the failure of the deal know perfectly well that the alternative cannot be to continue as if it were nothing with nationalized MPS, but a new market solution“.
But the national economic manager of the Italian Left Giovanni Paglia affirms.
“The failure of the Tesoro-UniCredit deal on MontePaschi confirms what we have been saying for years: there is no market solution for the bank, but only the possibility of a decisive and definitive public intervention. The sale is now closed and MontePaschi is oriented towards the service of families and Pnrr ”.
Just last week the news of the richest tax treasury had arrived the Draghi government would have decided to include in the budget law for 2022, the first Draghi maneuver, in favor of M&A operations:
to extend by six months the deadline, set at the end of the year, of the tax incentives launched to favor aggregations, particularly in the banking sector. Good news for Monte dei Paschi and also Carige, thorns in the side of the Italian banking system.
The scheme of the so-called fiscal dowry, or state dowry – other definitions are not lacking, as a state gift, treasure – it should be specified, it applies to all Italian companies, but tends to favor banks above all and has been a key element in the efforts of the Treasury, the first shareholder of Mps with a share of the 64%, aimed at convincing Andrea Orcel to ensure that the bank he manages, UniCredit, would take over the Monte.