Is Italy Next?

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Despite being put under IMF monitoring, there is no hope for Italy to receive bail-out money. Borrowing rates are soaring in the country, and word from the G20 summit in Cannes is that there is not enough money left to bail out the large Italy economy. Italy is now operating under the watchful eye of the IMF, which may or may not have been at the invitation of the Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. <--more--!>

Berlusconi has refused to substantiate reports that he is to step down as Prime Minister to allow someone else to form government or to push for early elections. Berlusconi does not have enough confidence in the Italian Parliament to pass the reforms that are being called for by investors to increase growth and cut debt. The President can choose to let a government be formed by technocrats rather than call an election, although a political government can still be formed if a loss of confidence vote passes in Parliament.

A large part of the problem seems to be Berlusconi himself. After being rocked with a number of scandals, Berlusconi barely clings to power. His critics say that he puts his own business interests ahead of the interests of the country. His People of Freedom coalition has failed to produce any policies to try and combat the growing debt, which sits at €1.9 trillion.

The future in Italy looks dim. The European Central Bank has been buying government bonds to try and keep the Italian economy from going over the 7 per cent yield level, which is where both the Portugese and Irish governments were forced to accept bailouts. If the Italian economy succumbs to pressure it is big enough to bring down the entire Eurozone with it. With rumours that Fiat, Italy’s largest private sector employer, may be looking to vacate the country where it has been traditionally based, the Italian economy does not show any signs of looking up.

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