Quotes: US MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Italy upbeat at end of 2012 after year of tension  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - AFP - 30/12/2012

No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!


(MENAFN - AFP) Italy is ending 2012 on an upbeat note, with renewed financial market confidence and optimism among analysts that the worst of the financial crisis is over, despite expectations of political uncertainty in the run-up to a general election in February.

The Treasury's borrowing rates were slightly higher at short, medium and long-term debt auctions last week, but were well below levels seen at the end of 2011, when Prime Minister Mario Monti took over from Silvio Berlusconi as Italy teetered on the brink amid the eurozone debt crisis.

In late November 2011, the country was paying a 7.56 percent rate for its benchmark ten-year bonds, sparking widespread concerns it might have to ask for a bailout.

On Friday, that rate stood at 4.48 percent.

As 2012 draws to a close, "even if public debt has breached the two trillion euros mark, Italy's ability to finance itself is no longer in doubt," said Enrico Marro in Italy's Il Sole 24 Ore financial daily.

"For 2013, optimism reigns," he concluded.

The turnaround is principally the result of two factors: the European Central Bank's promise to buy sovereign debt issued by eurozone member states without limit if necessary if they meet certain strict conditions, and Monti's decisive reforms which have restored Italy's credibility internationally.

Experts have forecast a couple of months of volatility on the markets in the lead up to the February 24 and 25 elections, but the worst appears to be over.

Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo said "the fever should drop off in 2013 compared with 2012."

The bond spread -- a key measure of the difference between Italian and German 10-year bond yields -- has also dropped sharply over the year, dipping below 300 basis points in early December from double that figure at its peak.

While European leaders congratulated Monti on restoring calm to the markets, Berlusconi's announcement at the start of December that he is running again for prime minister sparked panic and the spread began to inch up again.

The media magnate has dismissed the spread measure as "a trick and an invention" used to bring down his government.

Investors will be watching closely in the coming weeks to see if Berlusconi's large-scale media campaign for re-election wins him potential votes from Italians tired of Monti's austerity packages and record unemployment levels.

Renewed confidence in financial markets contrasts sharply with official forecasts for economic growth over the coming year, as Italy struggles to pull itself out of a recession.

Despite Monti's "Grow Italy" plan, the economy is not expected to return to growth before the end of 2012 or the beginning of 2014.

"Business and household sentiment does not appear to have benefited from the easing market tension," Intensa Sanpaolo said.

The government has forecast a 0.2 percent contraction of the country's gross domestic product in 2013 -- an outlook considered overly optimistic by Italy's business association Confindustria, which expects GDP to shrink by 1.1 percent next year.

One figure is on the rise however: the number of people on Twitter following Monti, who is drumming up support for a reform-led electoral campaign.

Monti, who resigned last week after Berlusconi's People of Freedom party pulled support from the government, has said he is keen to lead the country again after the elections -- a message welcomed by the markets, European leaders and Italy's Catholic Church alike.


  MENA News Headlines
Apr 23 2014Omantel launches service package for youth ,MENAFN
(MENAFN) Omantel announced launching 'Ozone' plan, a new package designed especially for the youth. This comes with the company"s constant efforts to enhance the communication needs of its customers, ...

Apr 23 2014Dh154 billion for Arabtec projects ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Arabtec will spend dh140 billion on building one million low-cost houses in egypt and dh14 billion on five mixed-use residential projects in abu dhabi and dubai its chief ...

Apr 23 2014?Titli? makers excited about Cannes selection ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The movie about the badlands of delhi?s dystopic underbelly will be in competition as part of the un certain regard section of the 67th cannes film gala to be held may ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Yaroub Bashraheel: In search of peace ... underwater ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) You've heard of diving snorkeling and other water activities but rarely has anyone heard of free-diving. it's a form of diving underwater without the aid of any breathing ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Schneider highlights intelligent health care solutions at forum ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Schneider electric a global specialist in energy management is set to showcase its leadership in intelligent health care solutions at the second saudi forum for planning and ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Divorcees can seek housing ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) The kingdom will accept applications from saudi divorced women and widows for financial and housing support said justice minister muhammad al-issa.al-issa called on applicants ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi Savola Group revenue up 43 pct in Q1 ,MENAFN
(MENAFN) Saudi Arabia's Savola Group registered a 43 percent increase in profits in the first quarter, well over expectations of analysts, Arabian Business reported. According to a statement to ...

Apr 23 2014Tamouh steps up activity on projects ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi-based real-estate developer tamouh has scaled up construction activity on all of its announced reem island projects to meet the rising demand for prime spaces in ...

Apr 23 2014Here?s your chance to share screen space with SRK ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Groupon india has joined hands with srk?s red chillies entertainment to give fans a chance to feature with the superstar in his upcoming film ?happy new year?. if you ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- New passport office opens at Red Sea Mall ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) The passport department has opened a new office for citizens and residents at the red sea mall.gen. abdul rahman bin abdullah al-tuwairki deputy director general of the ...

Apr 23 2014Dewa and GE explore collaboration opportunities ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Saeed mohammed al tayer managing director and chief executive officer of the dubai electricity and water authority (dewa) recently received a ge delegation to explore ...

Apr 23 2014Local international companies come out in force ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Cityscape abu dhabi has started showing stronger interest from property developers who have showcased their upcoming projects. the three-day realty show was opened by ...

Apr 23 2014Sale of Gate Towers penthouses launched ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Aldar properties has launched the sale of 21 exclusive duplex penthouse apartments at gate towers the penthouse collection in shams abu dhabi on al reem island. one of ...

Apr 23 2014ADCB profit grows 26% in first quarter ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi commercial bank?s profit grew 26 per cent in the first quarter of the year to dh1. however net profit rose 22 per cent year-on-year. non-interest income was 24 ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Noha Al-Sharif — an expert in Islamic sculpture ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Saudi sculptress noha al-sharif is known for her islamic inspired sculptures that reflect both religion and lifestyle. the concept of modern art attracted her to this medium ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- ASUS showcases product series at Aramco Week ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Asus described as the world's renowned consumer notebook vendor and producer of the 'world's best-selling motherboards" recently participated in aramco week and showcased a ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Five to die for 2003 attacks ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) A special criminal court on sunday convicted five people of terror related charges and sentenced them to death. thirty-seven others were sentenced to varying prison terms for ...

Apr 23 2014Qatar's Ezdan Holding buys 20 percent stake in Widam Food ,MENAFN
(MENAFN) Qatar-based Ezdan Holding Group said that it acquired a 20.16 percent stake in Widam Food Co. in a bid to promote investments and diversify its portfolio, The Peninsula Qatar ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait: 5938 illegal residents said 'rectified' status ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait city april 5 (kuna): up to 5 938 illegal residents have modified their status since formation of the central agency for remedying illegal residents' status in 2011 ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- 'All must join hands to save youth from strife' ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times)  kuwait city april 9 (kuna): minister of information and minister of state for youth affairs sheikh salman al-sabah said tuesday the youth ministry has completed a study ...


Click to Apply



Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country
Marketwatch News
UPI News
Comtex News

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details


Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks

Saudi Arabia 

Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

Portfolio Tracker


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor


Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters

© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help