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Rome/Milan/London — Italian officials have been trying to find a buyer for Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena for years. But there’s at least one offer on the table they are reluctant to consider and which has been kept out of the public eye.

A group of US investors led by former congressman Norman D Dicks has been courting Italian officials since the second half of 2020 with a €4bn plan that would use the cachet still attached to the world’s oldest bank to build a business with Italians abroad, according to two people familiar with the plan. The proposal runs counter to a long-standing government effort to orchestrate a takeover of Monte Paschi by UniCredit, Italy’s second-largest bank...

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