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Shares in Generali have slumped to the bottom of Europe’s major stock index this morning after Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo dropped its pursuit of Italy’s largest insurer.

Generali shares fell as much as 6 per cent at the start of Monday’s trading after Intesa revealed late on Friday that its management saw “no opportunities” from the venture.

The bank’s interest in Generali became public in January with Intesa canvassing shareholders in both groups about the deal. It had pledged to make a decision by the end of the month.

Shares in Generali have recovered somewhat to fall 5 per cent at publication time, while Intesa is Europe’s best performing bank this morning up 5.3 per cent.

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