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Renzi vows to aid savers hit by bank rescue

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Renzi vows to aid savers hit by bank rescue
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said the government would help the thousands of junior bondholders who lost investment as a result of a bank rescue plan.Photo: Thierry Charler/AFP
16:10 CET+01:00
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi on Thursday vowed to help shareholders and bondholders, after the government came under fire for a bank rescue plan that led one pensioner to commit suicide after losing his entire savings.

Some €300 million worth of bonds was wiped out after the rescue of Banca Etruria, Banca Marche, CariFerrari and CariChieti was announced on November 22nd, hitting some 130,000 investors.

The 68-year-old pensioner hung himself at his home in Civitavecchia, a port town near Rome, after the so-called “save banks” plan wiped out €100,000 held, mostly in bonds, at Banca Etruria.

Read more: Man kills himself as bank failure wipes out savings

The rescue plan was ushered in before the EU's so-called "bail-in" rules – under which account holders with deposits of more than €100,000, along with shareholders and bondholders, would bear the brunt of losses before any public money can be used to bail a bank out - takes effect on January 1st.

"It's impossible by EU rules to definitively save the shareholders and bondholders, but we are trying with great commitment and tenacity to find a solution, within the limits of the EU rules, to have some form of easement," Renzi was quoted by Ansa as saying.

The government is mulling a €50-80 million fund to help those who lost money, Ansa reported.

Renzi expressed his condolences to the pensioner's family but warned against “exploiting” his suicide.

"I'm not accustomed to exploiting the life and death of people...(the government) is working to find solutions," he said.

 

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