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Financials

Shares in Italy's Carige resume trading after 2-1/2 years' halt

MILAN, July 27 (Reuters) - Shares in Banca Carige resume trading on Tuesday after a two-and-a-half year suspension triggered by the European Central Bank’s decision to place the Italian regional lender under special administration.

To keep Carige in business, Italy’s depositor protection fund (FITD) pumped 600 million euros ($709 million) into the loss-making bank at the end of 2019.

Financed through contributions from Italian banks, the FITD acquired in the bailout an 80% stake in Carige that it currently values at around 100 million euros - or 0.17 euros per share.

Shares in Carige last traded at 1.50 euros.

After rival Cassa Centrale Banca walked away from a possible acquisition, Carige last week said there was no certainty it could strike a merger that it sees as key for its eventual relaunch.

In an investor prospectus published ahead of the trading resumption, Carige also said it needed a further 400 million euros ($473 million) in capital by the third quarter of 2022.

In the document it warned of possible wide price swings once trading restarted.

With a free float equivalent to just 11.7% of the bank’s capital, low liquidity could also affect share price movements, it said.

Italy’s bourse said on Monday there would be no reference opening price for Carige shares and banned trading orders without a price limit. ($1 = 0.8467 euros) (Reporting by Andrea Mandalà; editing by Valentina Za and Alex Richardson)

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