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Banco Popolare Refinanced Most of Its 2012 Debt, Merrill Says

Oct. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Banco Popolare SC Chief Financial Officer Maurizio Faroni indicated the lender has already refinanced “a relevant part” of its bonds maturing next year, according to a note from Bank of America Corp.

The firm “doesn’t need to enter the funding market until next summer,” according to a note obtained by Bloomberg News and e-mailed to clients by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, which hosted Faroni at a conference in London yesterday. “Their funding needs were covered for 2011 since the end of June and have already covered a relevant portion of the 5.5 billion euros ($7.4 billion) of maturities due in 2012.”

A Banco Popolare spokesman declined to comment. The Verona, Italy-based bank plans to sell real-estate assets and cut more than 1,000 jobs to boost capital and profit as part of its five-year business plan. The lender sold 2 billion euros in shares through a rights offer earlier this year before a second round of stress tests.

Faroni reaffirmed the bank’s 2013 targets and indicated the company is seeing a decline in gross impaired loans this year, Bank of America Merrill Lynch said.

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

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net

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