Monte dei Paschi making final effort to woo retail investors

In July, it announced that it would sell its €27 billion nonperforming loan portfolio and carry out a €5 billion rights issue in order to shore up its balance sheet, after being pressured over its regulatory capital position by the ECB and imploding during earlier European Banking Authority stress tests.

The offer runs from December 16 to 21.The bank, noting there could be no certainty Rome would pump in public money, warned that any state aid could force bondholders to convert their securities on worse conditions than those of the lender's voluntary debt swap offer. His resignation clouded Italy's political outlook just as the troubled Italian bank was seeking to lure investors for its recapitalization.

"We would have never done a deal like that with JPMorgan".

The last-ditch bid for viability would see those investors convert their bonds into shares, with the bank warning them they could face bigger losses if they don't.

On Thursday it said only that 65 percent of the five-billion-euro share capital increase was "reserved for an institutional offer to qualified investors in Italy and foreign institutional investors".

BMPS said it had received permission from Italy´s market regulator Consob to give small savers who had invested in the bank´s bonds and were excluded from a previous operation the opportunity to switch their bonds for shares from Friday through Wednesday.

A spokesman for Monte Paschi declined to comment on Saturday. Even at €1, the bank would be demanding a higher valuation than almost all its domestic rivals.

The bank also said no fees related to an anchor investor taking part in the cash call had been included in the estimate because "at present no agreement that would envisage the payment of such fees is being negotiated". Monte Paschi's liquidity coverage ratio fell to 120 percent as of November 30 from a 153 percent at the end of September, the bank said.

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