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Monte dei Paschi chairman says talks of CEO replacement are groundless

Reuters

MILAN (Reuters) - The chief executive of Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena <BMPS.MI> Fabrizio Viola has the full backing of the lender's chairman and reports he will be replaced are groundless, the bank's chairman said on Friday.

A report by Il Giornale daily cited financial sources as saying Viola would be removed.

"The reports regarding a replacement of the CEO are completely unfounded," Massimo Tononi said in a statement.

Viola and former chairman Alessandro Profumo are under investigation for alleged false accounting and market manipulation.

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Viola and Profumo were drafted in back in 2012 to turn the bank round after its balance sheet was wrecked by overpaying on the purchase of a rival bank and engineering risky derivatives trades.

(Reporting by Stephen Jewkes; editing by Agnieszka Flak)