SPAIN’S Liberbank and Unicaja banks have confirmed that they have held talks about a potential merger, driving shares of both higher on expectations of a deal.
A merger would result in the creation of Spain’s sixth largest lender, valued at almost €96 billion.
The banks confirmed in separate statements to the Spanish market regulator that they had been in contact as part of their regular analysis of potential transactions.
Unicaja said no decision had been taken, while Liberbank said no specific proposal had been submitted to its management.
Shares in both banks rose by 15 per cent on the news and Mediobanca is advising Unicaja while Deutsche Bank is working with Liberbank.
Both Mediobanca and Deutsche Bank decline to comment on the plans.