Gavin's Feed
Apr 24, 2013

No easy task for moderate Letta as Italy’s next premier

ROME (Reuters) – There is much about 46-year-old Enrico Letta, named as Italy’s new prime minister designate on Wednesday, that is likely to please financial markets and Rome’s international partners.

He is young, moderate and pro-European, and despite his low public profile he has been a member of the European political elite for many years. Letta speaks fluent English and has a sound grasp of economics.

Apr 23, 2013

Italy president ends talks, seen naming PM Wednesday

ROME (Reuters) – President Giorgio Napolitano completed a rapid round of talks with Italy’s parties and is expected to name a new prime minister on Wednesday, ending a stalemate since February’s inconclusive election.

Italy has been politically adrift in the middle of a recession as the centre-left Democratic Party (PD), which has the most seats in parliament, failed for two months to cut a deal with the centre-right of former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi or the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement.

Apr 23, 2013

Italy’s Napolitano speeds search for new government

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s president held urgent talks on Tuesday aimed at naming a prime minister to head a coalition government backed by the rival parties on the centre-left and centre-right and end two months of post-election stalemate.

Hopes that a government can be formed quickly gave a further boost to financial markets on Tuesday, with the yield on 10-year Italian government bonds dropping below 4 percent and the spread, or risk premium over German bonds, narrowing further.

Apr 23, 2013

Italy’s Napolitano accelerates search for new government

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s president held urgent talks aimed at naming a prime minister on Tuesday after two months of post-election stalemate, with the young center-left mayor of Florence Matteo Renzi emerging as a late candidate for the job.

Former Prime Minister Giuliano Amato is widely considered to be the favored choice of President Giorgio Napolitano, who has the final say and is expected to make the appointment late on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Apr 21, 2013

Napolitano elected for second term as Italy president

ROME (Reuters) – The Italian parliament on Saturday re-elected 87-year-old President Giorgio Napolitano to serve a second term in an attempt to resolve the political stalemate left by February’s inconclusive election.

As most of parliament cheered his re-election, demonstrators protested outside. By evening the crowd had swelled as thousands of people vented anger at an outcome that was widely seen as perpetuating the grip on the country of a discredited political class and favouring centre-right leader Silvio Berlusconi.

Apr 20, 2013

Italy president to stand again to break election deadlock

ROME (Reuters) – Italian President Giorgio Napolitano agreed on Saturday to serve a second term after a divided parliament failed for a fifth time to elect his successor and risked prolonged political paralysis.

The presidency is a largely ceremonial position but is crucial at times of political instability like the present, when the president plays a major role in forming a government and has the power to dissolve parliament.

Apr 20, 2013

Italy struggles to elect president after center-left collapse

ROME (Reuters) – Italian President Giorgio Napolitano agreed on Saturday to serve a second term after a divided parliament failed for a fifth time to elect his successor and risked prolonged political paralysis.

The presidency is a largely ceremonial position but is crucial at times of political instability like the present, when the president plays a major role in forming a government and has the power to dissolve parliament.

Apr 17, 2013

Italy’s Bersani to propose ex-Senate speaker as president

ROME, April 17 (Reuters) – Centre-left leader Pier Luigi
Bersani is expected to propose former Senate speaker Franco
Marini as candidate for Italy’s president, on Wednesday, risking
a split in his Democratic Party a day before voting begins.

A PD source said Marini, a prominent Catholic and former
leader of the moderate CISL union, would be put forward at a
party meeting shortly. He would also have the backing of Silvio
Berlusconi’s centre-right bloc and the centrists led by Prime
Minister Mario Monti, the source said.

Apr 17, 2013

Star Movement switches candidate ahead of Italy president race

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s 5-Star Movement changed its candidate for president on Wednesday after the winner of an online ballot withdrew, adding to uncertainty ahead of a vote that is key to ending political stalemate since February’s general election.

Less than a day before parliament starts to vote on a new president, parties are struggling to find any broad agreement on a candidate to succeed President Giorgio Napolitano, whose term ends on May 15.

Apr 11, 2013

Official statistics hide true scale of Italian joblessness

ROME (Reuters) – Millions of discouraged Italians are so convinced they have no chance of finding work that they have given up looking altogether, meaning official figures severely understate the number of unemployed.

Italy’s headline jobless rate of around 11 percent is broadly in line with the European Union average and far lower than in Spain, Portugal or Greece.