The foundation for a long time had cash to splash, from financing academic scholarships to sponsoring the city’s prized Palio horse race in Piazza del Campo.
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The fates of the world's oldest bank and the Italian medieval city of Siena – home to the celebrated Palio horse race – have been tightly linked for over 500 years. But while the Monte dei Paschi di Siena (BMPS) is clinging to hope a last-ditch rescue scheme will prevent it from being wound down after years of ills, Siena is having to learn to live without its patronage.In the 10 years following 2000, it handed over around 150 million euros ($159 million) a year, with a peak of 233 million in 2008 .But squeezed hard by the crisis, the foundation, which now holds just 1.49 percent of the bank, was forced to sharply reduce the amounts given to the city. The turnaround plan for the bank will go to a shareholder vote Thursday, and the city's 50,000 residents fear job losses if it fails.
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