December 2, 2016 / 2:47 PM / 10 months ago

Italian court freezes parts of cooperative bank reform

MILAN, Dec 2 (Reuters) - Italy’s top administrative court on Friday suspended some aspects of a landmark reform the government passed in early 2015 to force large cooperative banks to become joint-stock companies.

The reform, aimed at improving the banks’ governance and encouraging mergers, gave Italy’s 10 largest “popolari” banks until the end of this year to shed their cooperative status.

Only two of them, Popolare di Sondrio and Popolare di Bari, have not yet asked shareholders to approve the transformation. These two are planning to do so this month.

The court said in a statement it was suspending certain elements of the reform as a precaution until the Constitutional Court ruled on its legitimacy following appeals filed against the new rules. (Reporting by Valentina Za)

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