Skip to main content

Italians: Now we're often just in a survivalist mentality

Italians are going to the polls in a election which will set Italy's future economic path. It's a vote that has implications for the whole of the euro zone. WSJ's Christopher Emsden reports from Rome. Photo: Getty Images
ROME—Forty-something Italians are facing austerity for the rest of their working lives—just as they have since becoming adults.
"We are the lost generation," says Andrea Bolla, the 46-year-old chief executive of energy provider Vivigas and the Valdo Prosecco winery near the northern city of Verona. He says he pays more taxes and receives fewer services while navigating more red tape than his father did while running the family businesses.
WSJ's Giada Zampano in Rome feels the pulse of Italian disaffected voters as they head to the polls for Italy's most-watched elections in decades. Photo: EPA
"He always felt difficulties could be overcome," says Mr. Bolla, who has three daughters. "Now we're often just in a survivalist mentality."
Two days of voting in Italy's national elections come to a close Monday, paving the way for a likely coalition government that will have to take on the country's most urgent economic problems. What won't be high on the agenda is whether to lighten the heavy tax burden that a swath of the Italian population has borne for the past two decades: Enforcing austerity will be the main task of whatever government emerges from the vote.
Since 1992, when Mr. Bolla and his cohort began working, public debt has climbed to 127% of gross domestic product in 2012 from 102% in 1992, despite two decades of tight budgets that crimped investment and led to lower wages and salaries.


Popular posts from this blog

Future of oil is bleak. By 2030, 95% of people may not own private cars which would wipe off the automobile industry

A futurist and clean energy expert, Toni Seba, has predicted that electric vehicles would destroy the global oil industry after a decade. By 2030, 95% of people won't own private cars which would wipe off the automobile industry, he says.

Boeing and JetBlue Airways have announced they would begin selling a hybrid-electric commuter aircraft by 2022. Planned by start-up Zunum Aero, the small plane would seat up to 12 passengers and reduce travel time and cost of trips under 1,600 km.


Can Herbalife 'Afresh' cause insomnia(sleeplessness) and heart problems?

Here is another "great" product from Herbalife. Marketed as an ENERGY drink mix. Few people know it contains Gurana seeds which have no active compound giving artificial energy other than caffeine. Afresh also contains additional caffeine

Ingredients of Herbalife Afresh Energy Drink Mix:
Maltodextrin, Orange Pekoe Extract, Guarana Seed Extract, Acidity Regulator - 330 and Caffeine Powder.

Side effect include insomnia, sleeplessness and heart problems, It is especially harmful for people with High blood pressure.

PPF interest rate cut to 7.9% but are other investment options better? Here's a comparison

The Public Provident Fund (PPF) will now offer 7.9% but experts say it is still a good option for investors. Given that consumer inflation is down to 3.65%, the real rate of return of the PPF is a healthy 4.25%. 

"This is quite impressive for an option that offers assured returns," says Amol Joshi, Founder, PlanRupee Investment Service. "Investors should continue to take advantage of this long-term tax-free product," he adds. 

Even if you compare the PPF rate with the 10-year government bond yield, the scheme is attractive. "The 10-year bond yield is a better benchmark for PPF than consumer inflation," says Manoj Nagpal, CEO, Outlook Asia Capital
Currently, the 10-year bond yield is around 6.8% and the PPF at 7.9% makes it for a premium of 110 basis points. "Historically, the average premium has been around 75 bps. So, the PPF investor is today earning a higher real return," says Nagpal. Even so, some investors may be feeling disappointed by the cu…