Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

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Posts Tagged ‘Italy’

Italian Politics and Europe’s Future

Posted by hkarner - 10. April 2018

Jeffrey D. Sachs, Professor of Sustainable Development and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University, is Director of Columbia’s Center for Sustainable Development and of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. His books include The End of Poverty, Common Wealth, The Age of Sustainable Development, and, most recently, Building the New American Economy.

Italy – which stands at the border between Europe’s prosperous north and crisis-ridden south, and between an open Europe and one seized by atavistic nationalism – will play a pivotal role in determining whether the EU survives long enough to reform itself. The coalition government that emerges will prove crucial.

NEW YORK – More than ever, the European Union needs unity to assert its values and interests in an age when US global leadership is on the verge of collapse, China is ascendant, and Russia wavers yet again between cooperation and confrontation with the EU. Divided, the EU is a mere helpless spectator to geopolitical upheaval. United, the EU can play a critical global role, as it uniquely combines prosperity, democracy, environmentalism, innovation, and social justice. And whether the EU regains unity of purpose, or instead spirals into disarray, will depend on what happens now in Italy. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Lesser Evil for the Eurozone

Posted by hkarner - 28. März 2018

Jean Pisani-Ferry, a professor at the Hertie School of Governance (Berlin) and Sciences Po (Paris), holds the Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa chair at the European University Institute and is a Mercator senior fellow at Bruegel, a Brussels-based think tank.

For three decades, the consensus within the European Commission and the European Central Bank on the need for market reforms and sound public finances has been strong enough to overcome opposition in small countries and outlast procrastination in large ones. Today, however, the eurozone playing field has become a battleground.

PARIS – It was not supposed to happen like this. The formation of a new German government took so long that it was only after the Italian general election on March 4 resulted in a political earthquake that France and Germany started to work on reforming the eurozone. German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron have now resolved to sort out their differences and deliver a joint reform roadmap by July. But they cannot ignore changes brought by the landslide victory of Italy’s anti-system parties. Until then, populism had seemed contained. It has now become mainstream. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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What Italy’s Election Means for the EU

Posted by hkarner - 23. März 2018

Lucrezia Reichlin, a former director of research at the European Central Bank, is Professor of Economics at the London Business School.

The EU – and the eurozone, in particular – are now facing a serious political challenge, exemplified by the outcome of Italy’s recent election. Are European institutions strong enough to confront that challenge, or must EU leaders rethink – and potentially recast – the pillars of cooperation?

ROME – Italy’s recent election – in which voters rebuffed traditional parties in favor of anti-establishment and far-right movements, producing a hung parliament – should serve as a wake-up call for Europe. The decades-old project of building European unity may not just be far less robust than assumed; without a significant rethink, it may not even be viable.

The financial crisis of 2008 and the debt crisis that followed revealed major flaws in the governance of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Member states responded by building new institutions, such as the Single Supervisory Mechanism and the European Stability Mechanism. These efforts are, however, almost certainly inadequate to make the EMU resilient enough to withstand future financial crises. Anyone who believes in the European project should hope that further reforms follow soon. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Italian Election Dims Hopes of Eurozone Reform

Posted by hkarner - 13. März 2018

Date: 12-03-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal By Simon Nixon

Rise of antiestablishment parties makes prospect of overhaul at June summit increasingly unlikely

Luigi Di Maio, the 5 Star Movement party’s leader and candidate for the post of Italian prime minister, celebrated with the party’s showing in Italian elections last week.

The key question that European policy makers have been debating for the past year is this: Should reforms to strengthen the eurozone take place before or after an Italian crisis?

Of course, no one publicly puts it quite so starkly.

Instead, they hide behind technical language: They argue over whether the eurozone should prioritize “risk reduction” or “risk sharing.” But everyone knows what they mean.

Should the eurozone arm itself with tools to tackle a Greek-style debt crisis in Italy—and perhaps even forestall it? Or should it wait until the markets conclude that the European Union’s third-largest economy’s debts are unsustainable and then clean up the mess?

Last week, Italians answered the question for themselves. By voting to fill more than half their parliament with representatives of antiestablishment, euroskeptic parties, they almost certainly dashed any realistic prospect of eurozone leaders agreeing at a June summit to a package of far-reaching changes to the way that the eurozone is managed. That would include proposals to create a common budget to be overseen by a eurozone finance minister and the creation of a common deposit guarantee scheme to underpin the entire eurozone banking system. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Why Germany’s new government is not about to go soft on the euro

Posted by hkarner - 10. März 2018

Date: 08-03-2018
Source: The Economist: Charlemagne

Italy’s depressing election will not help

FOR nearly half a year serious business in the European Union has been on hold as Germany struggled to cobble together a government. On March 4th the waiting came to an end when the centre-left Social Democratic Party declared that its members had voted two-to-one to rejoin Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democrats (CDU) in coalition. The sighs of relief in Paris and Brussels were almost audible. Yet inside the Willy Brandt Haus, the SPD’s Berlin headquarters, the mood was distinctly flat. So divisive had the issue been that party apparatchiks agreed in advance to mute their reactions to the result. The SPD has secured juicy ministries and all sorts of policy concessions from Mrs Merkel. But announcing the news on Sunday, Olaf Scholz, the SPD’s acting chairman and the presumed next finance minister, displayed all the enthusiasm of a funeral celebrant on Xanax.

That reflected the deep ambivalence of a wounded party towards renewing an arrangement that since 2013 has squashed its identity (and its vote share). It might also serve as a warning for foreigners who expect the SPD to inject a dash of vigour into Germany’s European policy. EU officials speak of a window of opportunity for reforms opened by Emmanuel Macron’s election in France, a sprightly economic upswing and the unfamiliar absence of crisis. Their hopes were further elevated by a SPD-CDU coalition agreement apparently infused with Europhilia, its first chapter titled “A new departure for the EU”. The red lines outsiders had come to expect from Germany on matters like risk-sharing in the euro zone seemed conspicuously absent. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Will More Italians Vote With Their Feet?

Posted by hkarner - 7. März 2018

Edoardo Campanella

Edoardo Campanella is a Future of the World Fellow at the Center for the Governance of Change of IE University in Madrid.

Roughly 5.5 million Italians – 8% of the country’s population – currently reside abroad, with 1.5 million having left since 2007. The results of the recent election are likely to convince even more of Italy’s best and brightest that they would be better off leaving.

MILAN – Italy’s inconclusive general election, with its clear populist drift, will likely lead to a prolonged period of political stalemate, freezing the adoption of much-needed structural reforms. But the deadlock, and the related perception that the country is unwilling to change, might have another chilling effect. It will push more of Italy’s top talent abroad, exacerbating a trend that has plagued the country for more than a decade.

Since 2007, almost 1.5 million Italians have left the country, joining four million other expats. To put the number in perspective, roughly 8% of the Italian population currently resides abroad. But the actual figure could be higher. Italian expats refrain from declaring to national authorities their true residential status to preserve their access to benefits like free health care. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The People vs. Democracy?

Posted by hkarner - 7. März 2018

Jan-Werner Mueller

Jan-Werner Mueller is a professor of politics at Princeton University. His latest book is What is Populism?

Are voters really so irrational and ill-informed that they make terrible choices, as the election result in Italy, the UK’s Brexit vote and the election of Donald Trump in the US seem to suggest? If they are, as many liberals have come to believe, the obvious next step is to take even more decision-making power away from them.

PRINCETON – The election result in Italy, where populists and far-right parties topped the polls, following the twin disasters of Brexit in the United Kingdom and Donald Trump’s election in the United States, seems certain to harden a common liberal belief: the people brought these calamities on themselves. “Ordinary citizens,” according to this view, are so irrational and ill-informed that they make terrible choices. Some go a step further and attribute to them coherent preferences for anti-democratic leaders. Indeed, a new book asserts that the problem is one of The People vs. Democracy. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Chef des deutschen Ifo-Instituts warnt vor Staatspleite Italiens

Posted by hkarner - 3. März 2018

Das Land habe die Zeit für Reformen, die ihm die EZB verschafft habe, nicht genutzt, kritisiert Clemens Fuest. Die Euro-Länder müssten jetzt Vorkehrungen treffen.

Das deutsche Ifo-Institut warnt vor einer Staatspleite Italiens. Das Land habe die Zeit für Reformen, die ihm die Europäische Zentralbank (EZB) durch den Kauf von Staatsanleihen verschafft habe, nicht genutzt, sagte der Präsident des Wirtschaftsforschungsinstituts, Clemens Fuest, dem „Handelsblatt“ laut Vorausbericht.

„Es droht ein weiterer schleichender Anstieg der Staatsverschuldung bei stagnierender Wirtschaft, der langfristig doch in eine Staatspleite führen könnte.“ Daher müssten die Euro-Länder jetzt Vorkehrungen treffen, damit eine solche Pleite auf Kosten der Gläubiger des italienischen Staates gehen würde und nicht auf Kosten der Steuerzahler im Rest der Eurozone.  Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Real Italian Job: Make the Economy More Productive

Posted by hkarner - 1. März 2018

Date: 27-02-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Dysfunctional government and entrenched habits are holding back businesses, researchers say

ROME—The campaign leading up to Italy’s national elections on March 4 has featured populist promises of largess but neglected what economists have long said is the real Italian disease: The country has forgotten how to grow.

Take Gianni Angelilli’s pizzeria in downtown Rome. He uses an innovative dough mix and flexible cooking methods, drawing long lines and rave reviews. But Italy is too bureaucratic, the locals have no money and his ambition isn’t what it used to be, Mr. Angelilli said. If he opens more outlets, they will be abroad.

Now, foreigners have more desire to eat well than Italians,” he said. “Italy is dead. Italy is finito.”

Italy prides itself on its creativity, but its economy is recovering from the upheaval of recent years at a slower pace than the rest of Europe. The core of the problem is a lack of growth in productivity, which means the country has steadily lost touch with a rapidly changing world over the last quarter-century. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Will Italy Cross the Illiberal Rubicon?

Posted by hkarner - 1. März 2018

Dominique Moisi is Senior Counselor at the Institut Montaigne in Paris. He is the author of La Géopolitique des Séries ou le triomphe de la peur.

Whatever the outcome of Italy’s election, it will have far-reaching implications not just for Italy and the EU, but for the cause of democracy worldwide. Whether or not they realize it, Italy’s voters are about to choose not just among political parties, but also between political regimes.

PARIS – In 1841, the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi completed his celebrated opera Nabucco. “Va, pensiero,” his famous aria describing the fate of the Hebrews in the desert, would go on to become a rallying cry for Italian patriots fighting for liberation from the Austrian Empire.

Then, in a sesquicentenary performance conducted by Riccardo Muti at the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome in 2011, Nabucco was put in the service of democracy. Silvio Berlusconi, the prime minister at the time, was present in the audience, and he would wake up the next day to headlines in the Italian press such as, “Berlusconi Overthrown by Verdi.” Of course, it would be more accurate to say that Berlusconi, who was forced to resign later that year, overthrew himself, through his displays of personal excess and financial corruption. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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