OECD plays down FT referendum bank fears

Eight banks threatened by No victory, says financial daily

OECD plays down FT referendum bank fears

Paris, November 28 - The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development on Monday played down fears raised by the Financial Times that eight Italian banks might fail if Italians vote to reject a Constitutional reform of Italy's political machinery in a December 4 referendum. "Economic policy can't be written from what we read every day in the papers," said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurria, "also because papers..change three times a day. "You can't run an economy according to the exchange rates, the bourse, or what papers write," said Gurria, sterssing that "what counts are structural reforms". The FT said Sunday that "up to eight of Italy's troubled banks risk failing if prime minister Matteo Renzi loses a constitutional referendum next weekend and ensuing market turbulence deters investors from recapitalising them, officials and senior bankers say". It said Italy has eight banks "known to be in various stages of distress": its third-largest by assets, Monte dei Paschi di Siena, mid-sized banks Popolare di Vicenza, Veneto Banca and Carige, and four small banks rescued last year: Banca Etruria, CariChieti, Banca delle Marche, and CariFerrara.

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