Eni, ERG, Fiat, Gemina, Intesa, Snam: Italian Equity Preview

The following companies may be active in Italian trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses and share prices are from the previous close.

Italy’s benchmark FTSE MIB Index rose 174.19, or 0.8 percent, to 22,618.05 in Milan on Feb. 4.

Assicurazioni Generali SpA (G IM): Italy’s biggest insurer may become a strategic investor in VTB Group, Russia’s second- largest lender, Vedomosti reported, citing two unidentified people working on the matter.

Generali may buy less than half of the 10 percent of VTB that’s being sold, the newspaper said. The shares increased 0.3 percent to 16.5 euros.

Banca Popolare di Milano Scrl (PMI IM): Mediobanca Securities cut its rating on Popolare di Milano Scrl and Intesa Sanpaolo SpA (ISP IM) to “underperform” from “neutral.” The brokerage, which cut its stance on European banks today, said in a note that the downgrade “reinforces our negative stance on Italy as we expect short-term capital issues to prevail over long-term rising rates expectations.”

Separately, CA Cheuvreux added Intesa to its “banking sector top picks.” Popolare di Milano fell 1.3 percent to 3.11 euros. Intesa gained 1.2 percent to 2.52 euros.

Bulgari SpA (BUL IM): The world’s third-largest jeweler had its price estimate increased to 7.9 euros from 6.9 euros at Deutsche Bank AG. The shares slid 0.3 percent to 7.53 euros.

Eni SpA (ENI IM): Italy’s biggest oil company hasn’t experienced output disruptions in Egypt due to political unrest, Claudio Descalzi, the company’s head of exploration and production, told Sky TG24 in an interview on Feb. 4. The shares rose 0.8 percent to 18.13 euros.

ERG SpA (ERG IM): The Italian oil refiner may report 2010 annual revenue of 8 billion euros ($11 billion), La Stampa reported, citing an interview with Chief Executive Officer Alessandro Garrone. The shares declined 0.3 percent to 10.16 euros.

Fiat SpA (F IM): Chrysler Group LLC, the U.S. carmaker controlled by Fiat, has 80 percent of its U.S. dealers operating profitably, the highest percentage since 2000, Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said Feb. 4 at an event in San Francisco that preceded the National Automobile Dealers Association annual convention.

Fiat and Chrysler may merge in two to three years and have headquarters in the U.S., Il Sole 24 Ore reported, citing comments by Marchionne at the same event. The shares fell 0.2 percent to 7.07 euros.

Gemina SpA (GEM IM): The Benetton family may raise its 30 percent stake in the majority holder of Rome’s airports operator, Il Sole 24 Ore reported Feb. 5, without saying where it got the information.

The Benettons are interested in buying Gemina stakes from other investors who may want to sell, Il Sole said, without giving further details. The shares slipped 1.5 percent to 57.75 euro cents.

Snam Rete Gas SpA (SRG IM): The country’s gas pipeline operator must pay a fine of 580,000 euros for breaching rules on measuring the energy content of its gas, Italy’s energy regulator said in a Feb. 5 statement. The shares fell 0.8 percent to 3.83 euros.

Tod’s SpA (TOD IM): The maker of luxury shoes and handbags had its price projection lifted to 68 euros from 66.5 euros at Deutsche Bank. The shares added 0.3 percent to 76.13 euros.

Unipol Gruppo Finanziario SpA (UNI IM): Exane BNP Paribas lowered its price estimate on Italy’s fourth-biggest insurer by 8 percent to 55 euro cents. The shares gained 1.1 percent to 53 euro cents.

To contact the reporters on this story: Sonia Sirletti in Milan at ssirletti@bloomberg.net. 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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