Gavin's Feed
Nov 28, 2014

Special Report: Why Italy’s stay-home shoppers terrify the euro zone

ROME (Reuters) – “Three for the price of two” used to be the most common special offer in Giorgio Santambrogio’s supermarket chains. It has barely been used this year. The reason explains why efforts to resuscitate Italy’s moribund economy are failing.

“People aren’t stocking up because they know prices will be lower in a month’s time,” says Santambrogio, chief executive of Vege, a Milan-based association covering 1,500 supermarkets and specialist stores. “Shoppers are demanding steeper and steeper discounts.”

Nov 28, 2014

Why Italy’s stay-home shoppers terrify the euro zone

ROME, Nov 28 (Reuters) – “Three for the price of two” used
to be the most common special offer in Giorgio Santambrogio’s
supermarket chains. It has barely been used this year. The
reason explains why efforts to resuscitate Italy’s moribund
economy are failing.

“People aren’t stocking up because they know prices will be
lower in a month’s time,” says Santambrogio, chief executive of
Vege, a Milan-based association covering 1,500 supermarkets and
specialist stores. “Shoppers are demanding steeper and steeper
discounts.”

Nov 23, 2014

Italy regional votes to test public mood on Renzi

ROME (Reuters) – Italians voted on Sunday in regional ballots which will test whether the country, tired of economic stagnation and austerity, is also wearying of Matteo Renzi’s nine-month old coalition government.

Renzi’s popularity peaked in June shortly after a landslide victory in European parliament elections, but his ruling party has been steadily slipping lower in opinion polls since, as the economy stutters and joblessness remains stubbornly high.

Nov 19, 2014

Weary Italy vents its rage in spate of strikes and protest

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s social fabric is fraying. People worn down by years of economic stagnation and austerity are suddenly giving vent to their frustrations with a spate of strikes and spontaneous protests which have taken politicians by surprise.

Scarcely a day goes by without Italy’s main cities being disrupted by workers, students or angry citizens’ groups. Center-left Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has been wrong-footed by the souring mood and his approval ratings are falling.

Nov 14, 2014

Italy languishes in recession in third quarter

ROME, Nov 14 (Reuters) – Italy’s economy shrank slightly in
the third quarter due to weak domestic demand, data showed on
Friday, putting the country back in recession and marking the
13th quarter running without any growth.

Gross domestic product fell 0.1 percent following an
unrevised 0.2 percent decline in the previous three months,
statistics bureau ISTAT reported, matching the median forecast
in a Reuters survey of analysts.

Nov 13, 2014

Italy central bank warns on low inflation threat for public debt

ROME, Nov 13 (Reuters) – A prolonged period of consumer
price stagnation would significantly impair Italy’s hopes of
lowering its huge public debt, the Bank of Italy warned on
Thursday.

Italy’s economy is shrinking and its inflation rate is close
to zero, the central bank noted in its twice-yearly Financial
Stability Report, making it difficult reduce debt from its
current record highs.

Oct 27, 2014

France and Italy offer to trim deficit further to win EU clemency

PARIS/ROME (Reuters) – France and Italy unveiled plans on Monday to trim their deficits more than previously planned in last-minute pitches to get clemency from the European Commission on their 2015 budgets.

The European Union’s executive arm has until Wednesday to decide whether to reject France and Italy’s 2015 draft budgets for failing to make sufficiently large improvements in their public finances.

Oct 18, 2014

Rome mayor recognises gay marriages, riles minister, bishops

ROME, Oct 18 (Reuters) – Rome’s centre-left mayor on
Saturday recognised the validity of 16 gay marriages performed
outside Italy, the first such ceremony in the capital, sparking
an angry reaction from the interior minister and the country’s
Roman Catholic Church.

“Today is a splendid day,” Mayor Ignazio Marino said in
Rome’s city hall where he registered the marriages of 11 male
and six female couples who had wed abroad.

Oct 17, 2014

Renzi’s Italian budget is not so tax-cutting after all

ROME (Reuters) – Two days after Matteo Renzi presented Italy’s 2015 budget it is emerging that the prime minister’s claims of unprecedented tax cuts to revive a stagnant economy are not exactly as he described.

Renzi said on Wednesday he would put 18 billion euros in Italians’ pockets through “the biggest tax cut in the history of the republic,” but official documents suggest a more modest fiscal boost, which has been confirmed by a government source.

Oct 15, 2014

Italy presents tax-slashing budget, defying Brussels

ROME (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi presented an expansionary, tax-cutting 2015 budget on Wednesday, ignoring the concerns of the European Commission which says Rome is not doing enough to rein in its huge public debt.

The budget, approved after an evening cabinet meeting, lowers taxes by 18 billion euros (14.42 billion pounds), the 39-year-old former mayor of Florence told reporters, describing it as “the biggest tax cut in the history of our republic.”