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Intesa Requested 24 Billion Euros in ECB Loans, CEO Says

Feb. 29 (Bloomberg) -- Intesa Sanpaolo SpA Chief Executive Officer Enrico Tommaso Cucchiani said Italy’s second-biggest bank requested 24 billion euros ($32.3 billion) in three-year loans from the European Central Bank today.

Intesa joined about 800 euro-area banks that tapped the ECB for 529.5 billion euros, more than economists’ median estimate of 470 billion euros in a Bloomberg News survey. In the ECB’s first three-year operation in December, 523 banks borrowed 489 billion euros. Cucchiani’s comments, reported earlier by Ansa newswire, were confirmed by a spokesman in Trieste, Italy.

“Banks are now largely insulated from shocks in the funding market, having pre-funded through 2014,” analysts at Goldman Sachs wrote in a note today. “Consequently, the costs of bank and sovereign funding have now been detached,” they said, including Intesa in their group of “investible banks.”

Mediobanca SpA applied for 4 billion euros, CEO Alberto Nagel told analysts last week. Federico Ghizzoni, CEO of UniCredit SpA, said last week that Italy’s biggest bank was planning to participate in the auction, without giving details.

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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