Italian Stocks Advance, Led by CIR, Fiat, Intesa, Monte Paschi, UniCredit

Italy’s benchmark FTSE MIB Index gained 344.92, or 1.7 percent, to 20,607.72 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Milan. The gauge increased 0.4 percent this week.

The following stocks were among the most active in the Italian market today.

Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA (BMPS IM) rose for the first day in three, gaining 3.2 percent to 1.04 euros. Italy’s third-largest bank was upgraded to “outperform” from “neutral” at Credit Suisse Group AG.

The brokerage also kept an “outperform” rating on Banco Popolare SC (BP IM), while lifting its price estimate to 6.2 euros from 6 euros. Banco Popolare gained 2.2 percent to 4.72 euros.

Compagnie Industriali Riunite SpA (CIR IM) advanced 5.2 percent to 1.48 euros, the biggest gain since May 10. Silvio Berlusconi’s Fininvest SpA may pay reduced damages to Compagnie Industriali Riunite SpA as part of a legal case involving the 1991 takeover battle for publisher Arnoldo Mondadori SpA, news agency MF-Dow Jones reported, citing a Milan court-ordered evaluation. The final sum may be reduced by as much as 24 percent from the original damages of 750 million euros, according to the report. CIR declined to comment.

“The news is positive for CIR, whose shares were not discounting the 750 million euros previously set,” said Gian Paolo Rivano, a fund manager at Gesti-Re SGR SpA in Milan.

Fiat SpA (F IM) rose 3.1 percent to 11.14 euros, the highest in more than 11 months. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reiterated its “conviction buy” recommendation on the Italian carmaker, saying in a note that “the demerger of Fiat Industrial is a key catalyst to release hidden value in Fiat Group.”

Gruppo Coin SpA (GCN IM) advanced for a third day, rising 1.4 percent to 7.19 euros. Cheuvreux lifted its price estimate on the department store chain to 9.5 euros from 7 euros, noting that “all units are performing better than expected.” The brokerage kept an “outperform” rating.

Intesa Sanpaolo SpA (ISP IM), Italy’s second-biggest bank, rose 3.3 percent to 2.44 euros, ending a two-day decline, as a gauge for European banks reversed losses after a report showed a rebound in demand for U.S. capital goods easing concern that the recovery is slowing.

Italcementi SpA (IT IM), the country’s largest cement maker rose 1.3 percent to 6.51 euros after falling as much as 2.2 percent. The company targets “sizeable” profit margins in its new five-year business plan, according to a statement distributed by the Italian exchange. Italcementi also agreed on a 920 million-euro five-year revolving credit line with 16 banks.

Pirelli & C. SpA (PC IM) rose 4.1 percent to 5.98 euros, the highest since May 2008. UniCredit Research kept a “buy” rating on the tiremaker, saying in a note that “volume trends continue to be strong everywhere and this also supports recent price increases introduced by all the main sector players.”

Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc initiated coverage of the stock with a “buy” recommendation, citing “the planned spinoff of its real estate division and mooted divestment of its broadband division.”

UniCredit SpA (UCG IM) rose for a second day, gaining 3.3 percent to 1.89 euros. UniCredit Chairman Dieter Rampl is under intensifying pressure from investors and regulators to choose a new chief executive officer after Alessandro Profumo left Italy’s largest bank with no succession plan in place.

To contact the reporter responsible for this story: Francesca Cinelli in Milan at fcinelli@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Merritt at dmerritt1@bloomberg.net.

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