October 17, 2019 / 7:56 AM / a month ago

Cattolica CEO says 2020 targets ambitious due to low rates, car sector

MILANO (Reuters) - Cattolica Assicurazioni (CASS.MI) is sticking for now to is 2020 targets despite a difficult backdrop, its CEO said on Thursday, adding the Italian insurer had no plan to reduce its 12.5 billion euro portfolio of domestic government bonds.

“Targets for 2020 are confirmed at the moment although markets are getting more and more difficult due to low interest rates and a car sector that shows no sign of improvement,” CEO Alberto Minali said on the sidelines of an insurance event. “Targets are confirmed but remain ambitious.”

Minali also said there were not appealing alternative investments available to warrant reducing Cattolica’s sovereign bond holdings.

Italian insurers are large holders of domestic sovereign debt and they had come under pressure when the value of Italian bonds plummeted under an anti-European government coalition which challenged EU budget rules.

Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro, writing by Sabina Suzzi, editing by Valentina Za

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