Italy - Factors to watch on Feb. 18

Mon Feb 18, 2013 2:22am EST

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The following factors could affect Italian markets on Monday.

Reuters has not verified the newspaper reports, and cannot vouch for their accuracy. New items are marked with (*).

TELECOM ITALIA, TELECOM ITALIA MEDIA

Diego Della Valle, head of Italian shoemaker Tod's, said on Saturday he has made "a serious show of interest" in buying television network La7, which is owned by a unit of Telecom Italia.

A person with knowledge of the bidding process said Italy's largest broadcaster would evaluate his offer on Monday before making a decision.

The board of Telecom Italia meets on Monday over the sale plan, impairment test and the issuance of hybrid bonds.

Telecom Italia has put up for sale the loss-making television company, of which it owns 77.7 percent, to help cut debt and focus on its core telecoms business.

* Italy's fund Clessidra, a bidder for Telecom Italia Media, would consider a takeover and a delisting of the group in case its offer was accepted, the fund's head Claudio Sposito told Il Sole 24 Ore on Saturday.

BANCA MONTE DEI PASCHI DI SIENA

The former head of Monte dei Paschi's finance department, Gianluca Baldassarri, was questioned for three hours in front of a judge on Saturday.

Baldassari is the first person to be arrested in a widening scandal that has rocked the world's oldest bank.

PAPAL RESIGNATION

The conclave to choose Pope Benedict's successor could start earlier than expected, giving the Roman Catholic Church a new leader by mid March, the Vatican said on Saturday.

Some 117 cardinals under the age of 80 will be eligible to enter the secretive conclave to elect Benedict's successor. Church rules say the conclave has to start between 15-20 days after the papacy becomes vacant, which it will on Feb. 28.

FINMECCANICA

Italian defence group Finmeccanica's subsidiary AgustaWestland denied on Saturday that India had cancelled a $750 million order for a dozen helicopters and said authorities had asked for "clarifications" within a week's time.

India launched its own inquiry after the arrest of former chairman of the Italian air defence group, Giuseppe Orsi, and investigators are due to travel to Italy this week to find out more about the case.

Orsi, who denies any wrongdoing, stepped down on Friday.

ENI

SocGen cut target price to 19.25 euros from 20 euros; rating "hold"

Barclays cut target price to 21 euros from 22 euros; rating "overweight"

ITALCEMENTI

Jefferies raised target price to 7.40 euros from 6.70 euros; rating "buy"

BUZZI UNICEM

Jefferies cut target price to 13.10 euros from 13.40 euros; rating "buy"

ECONOMY

Germany's economy will rebound sharply in the first three months of the year having subsided in the last quarter of 2012, Bundesbank chief Jens Weidmann said on Saturday. Analysts expect business morale data for Europe's economic powerhouse due for release early this week to show sentiment is recovering.

The Group of 20 nations declared on Saturday there would be no 'currency war' and deferred plans to set new debt-cutting targets in an indication of concern about the fragile state of the world economy.

FASHION

London Fashion Week kicked off on Friday. The British Fashion Council estimates orders of more than 100 million pounds ($155.23 million) are placed during the five day event, one of the big four catwalk fixtures alongside Paris, New York and Milan.

For Italian market data and news, click on codes in brackets:

20 biggest gainers (in percentage)............

20 biggest losers (in percentage).............

FTSE IT allshare index

FTSE Mib index........

FTSE Allstars index...

FTSE Mid Cap index....

Block trades..........

Stories on Italy...... IT-LEN

For pan-European market data and news, click on codes in brackets: European Equities speed guide................... FTSEurofirst 300 index.............................. DJ STOXX index...................................... Top 10 STOXX sectors........................... Top 10 EUROSTOXX sectors...................... Top 10 Eurofirst 300 sectors................... Top 25 European pct gainers....................... Top 25 European pct losers........................ Main stock markets: Dow Jones............... Wall Street report ..... Nikkei 225............. Tokyo report............ FTSE 100............... London report........... Xetra DAX............. Frankfurt market stories CAC-40................. Paris market stories... World Indices..................................... Reuters survey of world bourse outlook......... Western European IPO diary.......................... European Asset Allocation........................ Reuters News at a Glance: Equities............... Main currency report:...............................

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