Wolfgang Schäuble has become the evil genius of the euro crisis. He has understood that the Cyprus crisis won't lead to a bank-run and collapse of capital markets. We all know that the US is now recovering.
Downloadable (with restrictions)! In this paper we provide an explanation for three features that characterize the Italian savings rate: by international standards, Italy is a `high-saving' country; the Italian savings rate has declined markedly in the last three decades; the correlation between saving and growth is stronger in Italy than in countries at comparable stages of economic development. We compare the size and characteristics of credit and insurance markets in the major OECD countries and argue that the strikingly low development of Italian capital markets may explain these features of savings in Italy. In the second part of the paper we provide a number of empirical tests to assess the effect of earnings uncertainty and borrowing constraints on household saving. The results suggest that capital market imperfections are the likely source of the high Italian savings rate and of the strong saving-growth correlation. We consider the potential role of the public and informal sectors, bequests and the slope of the earnings profile, but reject these as explanations of Italian savings behaviour.
Higher exports show that Italy's economy is trying to become a new German Companies seem to hide their competitiveness. A question remains: Will Italian companies really invest in Italy and create jobs?
Downloadable! The aim of this paper is to explain why a low and declining saving rate should be a problem in a world of free capital flows and increasing wealth. In Italy consumer households’ saving have been the main driver of economic stability and growth, funding investments and public debt, and despite international turbulences Italy was acknowledged as a high saving country until the early 1990’s. Ever since, however, households saving rate plunged, in spite of an increasing financial wealth, and our aim is to explain why: we suggest two main causes. The first is related to the economic policies implemented to deal with four major economic events, prompted by economic misalignments: a) the 1992’s currency crisis, b) the run-up to the Euro, c) the 2006’ turning point, preceding the 2008’s crisis, and d) the 2009’s public debt crisis and the following policy of fiscal consolidation.
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