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UniCredit CEO confirms Bank of Italy's loan audit

Italy's largest bank UniCredit is pictured in downtown Milan September 12, 2013. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini
Italy's largest bank UniCredit is pictured in downtown Milan September 12, 2013. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini

ROME (Reuters) - The head of UniCredit confirmed on Wednesday the Bank of Italy was conducting an audit of the loan book of Italy's biggest bank by assets, after sources told Reuters the regulator was examining the loans of Italy's top two lenders.

"(This is) routine," UniCredit Chief Executive Federico Ghizzoni told reporters in answer to a question on a loan review being conducted by the central bank.

He did not give other details as he was leaving a meeting of the Italian banking association' steering committee.

On Tuesday, banking sources said the Bank of Italy was combing the loan portfolios of Intesa Sanpaolo and UniCredit in its push to tidy their balance sheets ahead of a sector check up by the European Central Bank next year.

(Reporting by Stefano Bernabei, writing by Valentina Za; Editing by Lisa Jucca)

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