— Analysis

  1. European view

    Britain's Norway solution

    by Anatole Kaletsky

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Shortly after UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s decision to call an unexpected “Brexit election,” I wrote that pro-Europeans in Britain might yet snatch victory from the jaws ...

  2. European view

    The Eurozone's hidden strength

    by Daniel Gros

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    For years, the eurozone has been perceived as a disaster area, with discussions of the monetary union's future often centered on a possible breakup. When the British voted to leave ...

  3. European view

    Vive l'Euro?

    by Lucrezia Reichlin

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the French presidential election on May 7 triggered a surge of optimism about the future of the European Union, and the eurozone in particular. This is ...

  4. Markets

    From bank loans to capital markets union, Europe builds bridge finance: mini-bonds and Schuldschein

    by Isabella Bufacchi

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    On the one side, bank deleveraging is reducing credit flows to the economy. On the other side, the creation of the Capital Markets Union is gaining momentum but it is a slow moving process. That’s why Europe needs bridge finance products, the “economics of private placements”, that is, hybrid instruments that help SMEs in the not-so-easy transition from bank loans to equity or bond public issues. Italy and Germany ...

  5. European view

    The Eurozone must reform or die

    by Kenneth Rogoff

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    With the election of a reform-minded centrist president in France and the re-election of German Chancellor Angela Merkel seeming ever more likely, is there hope for the stalled ...

  6. Business and economy

    Thanks to foreigners, the fall in births and increase in elderly people in Italy is slightly less of a worry

    by Alessia Tripodi

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    There were 96,000 fewer Italian residents in 2016, but the number of foreigners is rising, which now make up 8% of the population at the national level. Meanwhile the fall in births underway since 2008 is not stopping: for the second consecutive year births are below half a million. These figures were revealed by Italian national statistics office ISTAT as it presented an update on the demographic situation in Italy yesterday. The study ...

  7. Politics

    M5S grinds to a halt in Italian local elections but the race for the national vote is still open

    by Barbara Fiammeri

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    It is always misleading to extend the results of local elections to the situation at the national level. But after the first round of voting in 1,004 Italian municipalities on Sunday, the fact the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) was excluded from all run-offs in the main cities calls for some reflection. Reflection that is already underway within the party, which are also reckoning with the orthodox wing accusing the ...

  8. Markets

    Markets focusing on Italy's debt sustainability, yet again

    by Isabella Bufacchi

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Italy’s debt sustainability ghost is hovering over financial markets, yet again. “All scenarios are back on the table,” said an analyst commenting on UK’s surprise election results and Italy’s surprising setback on the electoral law reform . One of the worst case scenarios being analyzed by market participants worldwide is Italy’s political landscape and the risk of an upward trend of debt/GDP ratio, which hit ...

  9. European view

    EU economy needs advanced capital markets

    by Valdis Dombrovskis and Jyrki Katainen

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    It’s springtime and Europe’s economy is flourishing. The EU’s economy is growing for the fifth year in a row, a trend that is set to continue this year and next. But ...

  10. Markets

    The rescue of Banco Popular, a lesson that Italy has to study

    by Alessandro Graziani

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The emergency bank rescue of Banco Popular in Spain on the part of its rival Santander highlights how decisive the time factor is for preventing a bank crisis from becoming systemic and undermining the confidence of depositors. In just a few weeks, the government and Spanish authorities reached agreement with the European Central Bank and the European Commission and together activated an emergency plan that, in full respect of EU rules and without recourse to ...

  11. Business and economy

    Qatar says will continue to invest in Italy

    by Carlo Festa and Simone Filippetti

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Qatar Holding is ready to invest in Italy and new transactions in Europe. The decision by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates to break off diplomatic relations with Qatar, triggered in a few hours in the Middle East, does not seem to change (at least for now) the financial strategy of the small Gulf country in the Old World. Sources close to the Doha government say that “other interesting operations in Italy will ...

  12. Politics

    Italy's mad dash to the polls, but to do what?

    by Guido Gentili

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    An immediate election, but to do what? The only thing we know for sure -- that there is a mad dash to the ballot box -- is obscured by a deluge of questions waiting for answers. For now we only know that, in the blink of an eye, the majoritarian electoral system introduced in the early 1990s will be mothballed for a return to a proportional system (what appears to be an Italian version for the German system) that ...

  13. Business and economy

    Italy Q1 GDP estimate revised up to +0.4%, towards a +1.2% on a yearly basis

    by Davide Colombo

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Figures on greater revenues and credit activity in the services sector have spurred Italian statistics office ISTAT to upwardly revise its estimate for first quarter gross domestic product (GDP) by two decimal places. Italian economic growth in the first quarter of 2017 is now seen at +0.4% compared to the previous quarter, up from an earlier estimate of 0.2%, and growth on the year has been revised up to +1.2% from ...

  14. Business and economy

    The lingering burden of the crisis, and the duty of politics to guarantee timely solutions

    by Marco Onado

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    It was not just Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco’s last speech of this mandate. It was the chance for a summary of the effects of the European crisis on Italy and for an indication on the path that is left to take. The message is strong and clear: it is necessary first of all to break the two “weakness factors” that are suffocating the Italian economic recovery: the heavy weight of the public debt, and the deteriorated credit of ...

  15. Markets

    Bank of Italy and the markets share the same sense of urgency: Italy's debt/GDP decline "must commence without delay"

    by Isabella Bufacchi

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The Bank of Italy and foreign investors share the same preoccupation: Italy’s debt/GDP ratio is too high, at 133%, and it must fall in a constant and protracted way, its descending trajectory must kick off as soon as possible: “Italy’s high public debt is a source of vulnerability and acts as a brake on the economy” said Governor Ignazio Visco in his year-end remarks on May 31 at the central bank’s ...

  16. European view

    The costs and benefits of "ExItaly"

    by Biagio Bossone

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Durand and Villemot (2016) examine the effects of Italy's possible exit from the euro (“ExItaly”). According to their estimates, the “new lira” ...

  17. Politics

    Renzi and Berlusconi inching closer to a deal: proportional system and an early vote

    by Andrea Marini

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    “You are just like me.” They say that these were the first words that the then-premier Silvio Berlusconi said to the young mayor of Florence, Matteo Renzi, in their first meeting back in 2010 at Berlusconi's private residence at Arcore. Berlusconi was then at the top of his political career, the undisputed leader of the center-right and elected prime minister in 2008 after a sweeping electoral victory. Matteo Renzi ...

  18. Markets

    Record-breaking buy-back with syndicated exchange smooths the edges of the biggest BTP Italia ever

    by Isabella Bufacchi

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The biggest issue ever placed by the Italian Treasury in one shot is the BTP Italia maturing November 12 for €22.4 bn. It is just too big, a monster dimension, not easy to be refunded there again in one shot: its size had to be reduced, to smoothen the liability management of Italy’s public debt. But how? The BTP Italia is a special bond, linked to the Italian inflation rate and aimed at retail investors: ...

  19. Business and economy

    Italy sees first effects of the virtuous circle in high-tech

    by Luca Orlando

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    “Not doing it would be foolish,” explains Italian machinery industry executive Claudio Piccinini when asked about investing in high tech capital goods. “Our investment is a couple of million euros,” he said. “We are investing six million,” adds his peer Luciano Sanguineti, “and we are preparing for future growth”. And these were not isolated cases among entrepreneurs and managers gathered in ...

  20. Arts and Leisure

    Halting the modernization of Italy's museums would damage the entire country

    by Giuliano Volpe*

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    A few hours after the shocking sentence by Lazio’s Regional Administrative Court (TAR) which annulled the nomination of five directors of Italy’s top museums, Eva degli Innocenti, director of the MARTA Archaeological Museum of Taranto, yesterday inaugurated an exhibition on the Appian Way by Paolo Rumiz. Two days ago, unaware of the TAR ruling which starting today prevents him from directing the Naples Archeological Museum ...

  21. Business and economy

    Confindustria asks for "governability and stability": the return to a proportional electoral law isn't a solution

    by Paolo Pombeni

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    Confindustria President Vincenzo Boccia sent a clear message to the country’s society and politicians in his speech during the annual assembly of the employers’ association: Confindustria does not reason like a lobby, but like an important intersection of the country’s ruling classes. This is because Confindustria reaffirms that “our strength comes from feeling part of a community,” “a political actor, but equidistant ...

  22. Public finance

    Tweaking the deficit may avoid a VAT increase next year

    by Dino Pesole

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The road toward greater budget flexibility in Europe in 2018 is set to pass through a revision of deficit targets. This is how Italy may be able to avoid a hike in value-added tax (VAT) which is set to kick in next year, and may be able to achieve greater room for “expansive” budget measures to boost growth. Now that the Italian government has received the green light from the EU Commission for its 2017 accounts, it is starting to ...

  23. Markets

    Here's why markets are shrugging off terror attacks

    by Morya Longo

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    At least 189 people fell victim to terror attacks in western countries in 2016. That is 174% higher compared to 2015, according to the insurance broker Aon, and it is a signal of war. Yet many markets are close to historical highs, or rising strongly. There are two possible reasons: either the financial markets have become too cynical and dehumanized, or the attackers are no longer able to create any sort of terror. Whatever the ...

  24. Business and economy

    Falcone's motto "follow the money" still potent tool against Mafia on 25th anniversary of his murder

    by Roberto Galullo

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The investigative legacy of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s “great friend” Giovanni Falcone -- the anti-Mafia magistrate whose motto was “follow the money”-- continues to live on at the FBI twenty-five years after the massacre in Sicily on May 23 in which Falcone lost his life, along with his wife and his three-man police escort. Falcone’s method is still relevant today, said Kieran ...

  25. Politics

    Italy risks ungovernability without a new electoral law by February 2018 vote (an almost impossible task)

    by Andrea Marini

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    “There is no more time to lose on the electoral law,” former Italian premier and the newly confirmed secretary of the left-leaning Democratic Party (PD) Matteo Renzi has said. He has always considered the electoral law an issue that concerns the experts. But at the same time, he knows that the approval of a new voting system before the legislature finishes (in February 2018) is the only option to not consign the country to ...

  26. Business and economy

    Fear of the future: Italy is poorer and more unequal

    by Alberto Orioli

    IT
    24 Exclusive content for IT24

    The colors and brushstrokes of statistics are no longer capable of accurately portraying Italy: a country that’s stagnant, frozen, unequal, and polarized. It is perhaps due to this reason that ISTAT’s 2017 Report on Italy has fully availed itself of conceptual sociological tools like never before. Italy is stuck due to its inability to get its vital energies flowing, energies that are tied to greedy dynamics from generation to ...