Wires

Top MPS shareholder says hopes cap hike won't be needed

SIENA, Italy, Oct 9 (Reuters) - The top shareholder inItaly's third biggest lender, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, said on Tuesday it would vote in favour of a capitalincrease of up to 1 billion euros in the next five years buthoped the cash call will not be necessary.

Gabriello Mancini, chairman of the charitable foundationthat holds 34.9 percent of MPS, told a shareholder meeting hewas confident the bank's management would work to reduce itscapital needs.

Mancini said this would allow "to postpone or even cancel"the capital hike, which the bank is expected to launch by 2015and which would open the door to new investors.

The extraordinary shareholder meeting is expected to approvethe capital hike and changes to the bank's governance later onTuesday.

(Reporting By Silvia Aloisi)

((silvia.aloisi@thomsonreuters.com)(+39 02 6612 9723))

Keywords: MONTEPASCHI SHAREHOLDER/

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