MILAN Nov 20 Intesa Sanpaolo banking
foundation shareholders have never talked about a possible
merger between Italy's largest retail bank and peer UniCredit
, the chairman of the Carisbo foundation said on
Despite a flurry of denials by executives at both lenders,
sources close to the situation said discussions about a possible
merger were initiated by banking foundations that are core
shareholders in the two banks and are worried about their low
"Absolutely not, we never talked about that... we suspect
that this project never existed and was made up by journalists,"
Carisbo foundation chairman Fabio Roversi Monaco told reporters
at the end of a board meeting at Mediobanca.
The Carisbo foundation has 2.7 percent of Intesa Sanpaolo.
(Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro, writing by Anotnella Ciancio,
editing by Danilo Masoni)