World News

Mediobanca CEO expects second-tier banks to look at M&A in 2020

MILAN (Reuters) – Second-tier banks in Italy, Spain and possibly Germany are likely to consider mergers this year in a bid to boost returns which are insufficient to cover their cost of equity, the chief executive of investment bank Mediobanca said.

Speaking at a BreakingViews event in Milan on Wednesday, CEO Alberto Nagel said ongoing pressure from low rates and a possible rebound in loan loss provisions from new, so-called ‘calendar provisioning’ rules were all factors pushing lenders to consider mergers now that a major bad loan clean-up had been completed.

“I think consolidation will be more on the agenda of CEOs this year,” he said.

(Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro and Andrea Mandala, editing by Valentina Za)