UniCredit’s shares spiked earlier today, driven by reports reports that Samruk-Kazyna, Kazakhstan’s wealth fund, bought a nearly 5% stake in the bank. Samruk-Kazyna has since denied the rumour, according to Bloomberg. The stock gave back some of its gains on the news.
However, UniCredit is participating in a broad based rally in the Italian banking sector, and a succesful Italian bond auction this morning. This rally could in part be driven by Italian regulators’ decision to extend a ban on short selling financial shares until Feb 24.
The stock has been taking a real beating after UniCredit was forced to offer shares at a massive discount to market value, in an effort to raise $10 billion, to meet capital requirements.The bank’s balance sheet is in horrible shape after the bank posted a net loss of €10.64 billion in the last quarter.