Gavin's Feed
Oct 14, 2013

Italy seeking spending cuts in 2014 budget

ROME (Reuters) – The Italian cabinet will try to agree on Tuesday on a 2014 budget geared to reviving a chronically stagnant economy by cutting taxes and spending, while keeping the budget deficit inside the EU ceiling.

Enrico Letta’s left-right coalition has an easier task than its predecessors because, after the austerity of recent years, there is no longer a need for net fiscal tightening.

Oct 10, 2013

Tasks for Italy’s Letta after beating Berlusconi challenge

ROME (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta’s near term survival seems to be assured after beating an attempt by center-right leader Silvio Berlusconi to bring down his coalition government.

The government may now be less prone to infighting and instability, but it still faces an arduous task to put public finances on a sound footing and turn around what has been the euro zone’s most sluggish economy for more than a decade.

Oct 3, 2013

Letta bets on Berlusconi rebels for more stable Italian future

ROME, Oct 3 (Reuters) – Fresh from surviving a political
crisis, Prime Minister Enrico Letta must return rapidly to
Italy’s daunting economic problems but much depends on the fate
of the man who tried to bring him down, Silvio Berlusconi.

If a split in Berlusconi’s People of Freedom (PDL) party
becomes permanent after this week’s failed attempt to topple
Letta, the centre-right could become less bellicose in demanding
the tax cuts that split the coalition and strained public

Oct 2, 2013

Alfano turns on his master in bid to lead Italy’s right

ROME (Reuters) – Angelino Alfano may have changed the future of Italian politics by leading the internal party revolt that thwarted Silvio Berlusconi’s attempt to bring down the country’s coalition government.

Few thought he had it in him. The 42-year-old former Christian Democrat from Sicily was considered so loyal to Berlusconi that his name had become almost a by-word for subservience.

Oct 1, 2013

Italy political crisis spells good news for public finances

ROME (Reuters) – Financial markets are fretting over the latest bout of political turmoil in Italy but the absence of an operational government has sharply improved the chances that Rome can rein in its budget deficit as planned this year.

Silvio Berlusconi’s decision to withdraw his ministers from Enrico Letta’s government has halted plans for tax cuts that risked pushing the budget deficit above the European Union’s ceiling of 3 percent of national output.

Sep 30, 2013

Berlusconi in new storm as relations sour with president

ROME (Reuters) – Silvio Berlusconi was at the center of a new storm on Monday after a private phone call in which he made assertions about President Giorgio Napolitano was aired on television, prompting a furious reaction from the president.

A current affairs program on private channel La 7 broadcast a phone tap in which Berlusconi said he had been informed that Napolitano had exerted influence on Italy’s top appeals court in a case involving Berlusconi’s media empire.

Sep 29, 2013

Italian president hopes to solve political crisis without new vote

ROME (Reuters) – Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta will meet the president on Sunday to try to chart a way out of a deep political crisis after Silvio Berlusconi pulled his ministers out of the government and called for new elections.

President Giorgio Napolitano said he would only dissolve parliament as a last resort but just seven months after the last vote it is not clear if an alternative majority can be found.

Sep 26, 2013

Italy’s divided coalition to seek to plug budget hole on Friday

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s fractious coalition government will try to work out on Friday how to avert a planned rise in sales tax while reining in a budget deficit which is overshooting European Union limits.

Silvio Berlusconi’s People of Freedom party (PDL), a key partner in Enrico Letta’s fragile left-right coalition, has threatened to bring down the government unless it abandons the sales tax hike, due to take effect in October.

Sep 24, 2013

New Italian targets show lack of progress since Berlusconi’s fall

ROME, Sept 24 (Reuters) – Italy’s latest economic forecasts
reveal how little progress has been made to fix its finances and
restore growth since Silvio Berlusconi was forced from office at
the height of the euro zone debt crisis in November 2011.

With bond yields soaring, Berlusconi bowed to a demand by
the European Central Bank that Italy balance its budget in 2013
rather than 2014 as planned, to try to convince markets it could
curb a huge public debt then equal to 120 percent of output.

Sep 20, 2013

Italy cuts growth outlook, frets over instability

ROME, Sept 20 (Reuters) – Italy cut its forecasts for the
economy on Friday and pledged to correct a budget deficit that
is set to overshoot EU limits as coalition in-fighting threatens
the government’s ability to make reforms needed to spur growth.

Prime Minister Enrico Letta told reporters the tensions
which are undermining the stability of his broad left-right
administration would have to end for it to counter a prolonged
recession and consolidate Italy’s strained public finances.