Monte Paschi Is Said to Begin Bond Sale Next Week

(Bloomberg) -- Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA is preparing to sell covered bonds and will contact possible investors as soon as next week, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

Monte Paschi is attempting to issue the debt after it was unable to complete the second tranche of a bond sale last year amid market turmoil. The lender said in a statement late Friday that the European Central Bank warned in a letter that its capital position was weaker after abandoning last year’s sale.

The Siena-based bank said it will include details of the ECB’s draft letter in an offer document for the securities it plans to sell.

Chief Executive Officer Marco Morelli is seeking to turn around the rescued lender by cutting costs, selling non-performing loans and curbing risks. The ECB highlighted weaknesses the bank needs to address, including boosting profitability, which it said is “underperforming” the restructuring plan.

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