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Italy Banning Cash Transactions Over €5,000 As Latest European Austerity Package Revealed

Tyler Durden's picture


As part of its new austerity package, any cash transactions over 5,000 euros ($6,188) will be banned in an
effort to crack down on tax evasion, a government source said on
Monday, reports Reuters. "Reducing the ceiling on cash transactions, which currently stands
at 12,500 euros, forms part of the package of public sector hiring and
wage reductions and spending cutbacks being prepared by Economy
Minister Giulio Tremonti, the source said. The limit will also apply to cashiers' cheques." Yet another insolvent banking system comes to light, as all major transactions must occur within confines of Italy's financial institutions. We are confident this "simple" toggle will promptly fill Italy's empty tax coffers. Or not.

Reuters reports on what the Austerity package will likely look like via a draft it has obtained:

Italy's austerity budget to be approved on Tuesday will cut public sector hiring and pay, temporarily block those set to retire and reduce funding to local government, according to a draft obtained by Reuters.

The budget draft says only 20 percent of those who leave the public sector in 2011 to 2013 will be replaced, and it cuts transfers to municipal and regional authorities by 2 billion euros in 2011 and 3.8 billion in 2012.

Those who would have earned the right to retire in mid-2011 and at the end of 2011, according to the so-called retirement "windows", must remain at work for a further six months.

The budget, which aims to cut the deficit by around 13 billion euros in 2011, also makes cuts in the politically sensitive area of health spending, trimmed by 0.4 billion euros next year and 1.1 billion in 2012.

Spending by government ministries, including pay, is reduced by 8-10 percent per year in 2011 to 2013.

Other policies in the draft are a 10 percent cut from 2011 in the pay of government ministers and a 10 percent cut in the pay of public sector employees earning more than 75,000 euros.

The austerity package is still being hotly debated within the government and all the measures could be subject to change before final approval. The pay cuts for high earners is being resisted particularly fiercely by some ministers.

The government aims to cut the budget deficit from 5.3 percent of gross domestic product in 2009 to 2.7 percent in 2011.

The budget launches a crackdown on false claimants for invalidity benefits, announcing 100,000 checks per year in 2010-2012.

Among the victims of Italy's austerity plans is publicly funded think-tank ISAE, which conducts closely-watched surveys on Italian consumer and business confidence.

In future the functions carried out by ISAE will pass directly to the economy ministry, the draft says.

h/t RanSquawk


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Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:42 | 370283 doomandbloom
doomandbloom's picture

The Mafia will have to start using credit cards...

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:31 | 370584 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

No.  They have already perfected the art of "structuring." It'll just increase the demand for software written to do this. 

Such a law is another worthless government gesture to try to raise tax revenue. 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:44 | 370287 ZackAttack
ZackAttack's picture

This is exactly how Argentina started. Then they rioted and burned shit.

Only the first to panic managed to preserve any of their wealth.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:06 | 370518 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Yeah, the acceleration seems to be ... accelerating.  I am doing all I can for now: watching.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:28 | 370578 Tortfeasor
Tortfeasor's picture

Greece did this early on too.  Worked great, iirc.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:50 | 370302 John McCloy
John McCloy's picture

  hmm...that should curb the rise in LIBOR?

Nothing to see here folks just continue to contribute to your 401ks please.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:55 | 370319 carbonmutant
carbonmutant's picture

 Can you buy a Lamborghini on a VISA card?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:52 | 370486 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

You actually can! A Visa Black card will enable you to buy one

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:33 | 370589 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

You can, BUT the dealer will no do that transaction unless you pay the interchange fee of 2%, in addition to the cost of the car.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:21 | 370689 Clampit
Clampit's picture

Which should still be *considerably* less than MSRP ... ;-)


Any bets this actually increases the number of cash transactions? I know I'd "sell" my 911 that just "stopped running" for "$5K" to a "friend" ...


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:59 | 370329 FrankIvy
FrankIvy's picture

So how long before the cash transaction limit is lowered to 1,000 euros?


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:02 | 370342 Citizen of an I...
Citizen of an IKEA World's picture

How long before the limit is lowered to €250?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:13 | 370371 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

Mark of the beast!  Get your mark of the beast right here!  That's right, step right up folks and get your official(tm) MARK OF THE BEAST right here while you wait!


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:22 | 370399 Citizen of an I...
Citizen of an IKEA World's picture

None will be permitted to conduct trade without a forearm tattoo of the Goldman Sachs logo.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:20 | 370549 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

Correction.  Forehead, not forearm.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:37 | 370864 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Correction, brand, not tattoo.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 17:20 | 370943 OldTrooper
OldTrooper's picture

Is it just me, or is this starting to sound like a perverse cross between Atlas Shrugged and Idiocracy?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:04 | 371259 tip e. canoe
tip e. canoe's picture

with a touch of Brazil thrown in just for shits & giggles

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:56 | 370496 Ripped Chunk
Ripped Chunk's picture

24 hours, or less

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 12:59 | 370330 Coldcall
Coldcall's picture


Wow capital controls in Europe 2010! I find it quite incredible and makes me think things are way worse than perhaps even the most bearish prognosis.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:01 | 370337 John McCloy
John McCloy's picture

   The benefits of global welfare and socialized losses for bankers rears it's head. The elites never learn the lesson dictators, fascists and monarchs failed to learn throughout all of history. The masses cannot be ruled and rebellion and revolution is inevitable.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:54 | 370493 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

This is why I appreciate this site so much: grand pompous style to achieve nothing.

Rebellion where?when?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:02 | 370509 Postal
Postal's picture

Rebellion occurs when the ignorant masses accept they have nothing left to lose. The goal of the elites is to ensure the sheeple never reach that point of realization.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:22 | 370557 Cheeky Bastard
Cheeky Bastard's picture


While you may continue to play the role of armchair-analyst and spew garbage about the population dynamics in time of war; let me teach you something from personal experience. Masses never revolt nor do "the masses" change anything. They are killed off or disposed in another way. Wealth is confiscated and utilized by various fractions which can yield power over a territory to grab more territory from other fractions. Resistance is always done by a small group of individuals, and no resistance can achieve its goals without the help of an outside sovereign army or intelligence. You just keep waiting for that "mass revolt and civil warfare". It will never happen. You will see graves before you see revolt.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:18 | 370678 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

What "personal experience" with "population dynamics in time of war" do you have, if  I may ask? Don't want to offend you, you seem to have a really short fuse.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:35 | 370708 Cheeky Bastard
Cheeky Bastard's picture

I was in one. That good enough for you 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:42 | 370722 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

Was that what turned you into such an arrogant prick?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:06 | 370757 Cheeky Bastard
Cheeky Bastard's picture

No. I was always like this. Its sort of a shield; it keeps idiots away. Much better than being nice.

You and war chickens like you can keep on believing in some mass resistance all you like; never had, and never will happen. Pure utopia; no historical, or any other, grounding.

War is not a natural state for a human being to exist in; self-preservation and functioning institutions are; and escape is the best way to stay alive. Only those stupid enough and/or indoctrinated enough chose to go first head on; the rest dont. I was stupid enough.


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:09 | 370773 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

When did I say anything about believing in mass resistance? You refer to me as a "war chicken" without having any information about my background. You throw around hysterical accusations with no evidence to back any of it up. Seems to me that your kind of behavior would attract idiots rather than keep them away.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:23 | 370822 Cheeky Bastard
Cheeky Bastard's picture

What is your background. Unless you were in the trenches somewhere for months at time starved, outgunned and outmanned, with shrapnels inside of you; you were not in a war; more of a grown up camp. War is not killing Muslim kids and then going back to base to a game of ping pong and "Nickleback; Greatest Hits" CD and Bruce Springsteen poster on the wall to boost your patriotism. Thats camp.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:32 | 370849 Auric Goldfinger
Auric Goldfinger's picture

Enough with the talk you two.  Just get the rulers out and measure them already.



Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:05 | 371179 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

 thank you

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:34 | 370855 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

You are either doing some kind of schtick trying for some cheap laughs or you are psychotic. Either work on your routine so that it is at least minimally amusing or go to the VA hospital and see one of their shrinks. Your postings on this site are using up precious bandwidth, so do us all a favor and go somewhere else.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 17:40 | 370978 Postal
Postal's picture

And how do you know I wasn't? My ZH ID is my unit-assigned call. Rather arrogant of you to assume that you're the only one who knows about war when you know nothing about me. I could have been special forces, or never left CONUS--either way, you don't know. So don't try to sell me that you had to walk uphill both ways.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 19:09 | 371098 Budd Fox
Budd Fox's picture

For as much as I am positively sure CB doesn't need any help defending his views ( far by me..), by few signs and reading his posts ( I am one of his followers..) I think we are talking with aveteran of a nasty war in the East, either Chechenya or another god forgotten place.

In that, I can assure you that whatever part he was fighting for, the "rebels" or the Red Army, doesn't matter, but I can assure you his direct experience has been much tougher and nastier than whatever the U.S> Army experienced after Viet Nam.

So his views may appear nasty...but in such a battlefield your views turn black or don't muck around with sociology, if you want to live or die...that's why we like him.

He's straightforward

Disclosure: I was in the Army, in an elite unit...never been in a combat zone, but trained some boys who went there.I also visited them in hospital with horrible wounds and one never walked again without a chair...maybe I cannot understand CB fully...but I can relate to what he says.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 19:46 | 371160 Postal
Postal's picture

His experiences and opinions are irrelevent if he's going to use them as justifiction to attack me: I gave him no cause to do so.

I stand by my original assertion: Sheeple don't rebel en mass unless there is no other alternative. This is why militiary leadership schools stress the importance of leadership. Push your troops too hard and they'll turn or desert. Soldiers should fight the enemy in front, not an unrealistic command behind.

Sheeple in a war zone are concerned with staying alive, not rebellion--which is why I think his anaogy isn't exactly relevent to my original post.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:29 | 371211 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

You can like or follow him all you want. Based on my experience with people who have been in really nasty combat situations they don't act like he does. I don't believe a word he says, he's probably never been out of his mother's basement. I think he's a fraud.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:47 | 371226 velobabe
velobabe's picture

beware the knowers†

beware those who are quick to censor

they are afraid of what they do not know‡

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:29 | 371287 Postal
Postal's picture

That's rather harsh, unless you know him personally. Besides, he's respected enough in the ZH community that Tyler and Co. let him offer guest posts (although after his unjustified personal attack on me, I'm starting to question the wisdom of letting such a loose cannon have such open reign).

I certainly don't question his experience, and--to a small extent--understand the short fuse: Doesn't take much for me to unload, either. You can thank Uncle Sam for one more high-strung vet.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:58 | 371312 RichardENixon
RichardENixon's picture

"You and war chickens like you can keep on believing in some mass resistance all you like;"   This was CB's response to me towards the beginning of this exchange. This is the comment that set me off. Maybe I have a short fuse myself right now. I got wiped out totally in Hurricane Katrina and now it looks like I'm going to be wiped out again by this oil spill. I don't appreciate CB spewing out invective at me referring to me as a "war chicken" when he doesn't know a goddam thing about me and when I was simply trying to figure out where he was coming from in his argument in this thread. That's all I'm going to say on this subject, it's gone on too long.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 23:27 | 371317 velobabe
velobabe's picture

no, i am one of his whores on speed dial, #7

i smell so good

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:43 | 370715 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

The appreciation for that which is worthy of being despised renders the concept of a fuse moot on point.  Once circumstances reach a certain point all pretense is stripped away. This forms the essence of what makes CB's writing irresistible for those of us who know from where he speaks. As he so ably communicated just yesterday, it is the preachers we need to be aware of.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:38 | 371298 tip e. canoe
tip e. canoe's picture

very aware (thank u miles)

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:17 | 370801 cougar_w
cougar_w's picture

You have conflated two very different things.

"Unrest" is not "revolt". During a period of unrest, it can go as you say. During revolt however the gloves come off and the minority elites are put on the run. They often do escape to favorable regimes but the system they built to feed themselves is usually dismantled, if only for a little while until new lords rise from the ashes to continue the confiscations.

But then you suddenly seem to get it: "You will see graves before you see revolt."

Absolutely yes. No revolt without senseless deaths in the streets first, massacre of innocents, suspension of the rule of law, brutality for the sake of it, etc. And when enough people recognize that they have nothing left to lose and instead might have chance through violence of surviving an additional day or protecting their families, they will rise up. That just how human's do things.

Give to the wolves. Give to the wolves. Give to the ... no now we kill the wolves.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:25 | 370827 Fraud-Esq
Fraud-Esq's picture

that wasn't very cheeky

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:58 | 370911 Postal
Postal's picture

Geez, no need to bite my head off. Besides, you made my point for me: In the example you cited, the elites kept the masses from discovering they had nothing to lose by revolution, which allowed for their easy removal/disposal.

Despite your personal experiences, go back and study history. Revolutions--mass uprisings, that is--are always caused when the populous has 'nothing to lose': If you're planning to steal my gold and kill me, what do I have to lose by armed resistance?

And for the record, I am not waiting for "mass revolt and civil warfare." I do not advocate such, nor do I expect for such to occur. I was making the observation that in order for it to happen, the sheeple would have to stop being sheep and the elite will not allow it.

Tue, 05/25/2010 - 00:21 | 371408 dnarby
dnarby's picture


Anybody remember the civil rights movement here in the US?

I think there's going to be a lot more people behind this reform movement once it gets going.

No need for massive violence, although I expect a bit.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:05 | 370334 Mako
Mako's picture

Watching a financial system collapse slowly piece by piece is entertaining.

"We have met the enemy and he is us"

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:01 | 370336 john_connor
john_connor's picture

Re: the 5000 Euro cash transaction limit, this type of capital control is coming to America. 

Get your money out NOW.  And by now I mean yesterday.


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:32 | 370432 Rogerwilco
Rogerwilco's picture

[...] this type of capital control is coming to America.  Get your money out NOW.

Sorry, you're two years late on that recommendation, the door for big, hassle-free transfers closed in 2008. There is always the Papillon method...for somewhat lesser amounts.


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:23 | 370561 john_connor
john_connor's picture

Actually I've been saying it for at least 2 years; just not sure if anyone is listening.  But I agree.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 19:16 | 371111 Strider52
Strider52's picture

Now THAT's funny, I don't care who you are. I just got a mental picture of me shoving gold up my butthole.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:33 | 371291 Postal
Postal's picture

Considering that all I can afford is the 1g bars, this might be an option. Not so much for the silver coins, however... O.o

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:52 | 370485 Spitzer
Spitzer's picture

Is that for citizens or what ? Is this for real ? $6000 is beer money. How will I be able to buy beer ?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:01 | 370338 CurrencySpider
CurrencySpider's picture

Italy is in the best of position of the PIIGS.

It's low private debts will help carry it through.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:05 | 370349 Fraud-Esq
Fraud-Esq's picture

I concur. Some propaganda arbitrage for me. 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:01 | 370507 GoldBricker
GoldBricker's picture

Italy could also want to get out in front of the PR issue, signaling that, like Ireland, it will clamp down even before there is pressure. If perception is all that's holding you up, put your best foot forward.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:02 | 370340 Apostate
Apostate's picture

As long as they keep the bikini girls dancing on Berlusconi-TV, Italy has hope! 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:59 | 370913 LeBalance
LeBalance's picture

of being what? > Brain drained mindless masterbaters?  Oh, that's a high goal in life. And I thought maybe there was another Galileo among them.  Rats.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:02 | 370341 Racer
Racer's picture

Let me see, they are banning transactions over €5000 to curb tax evasion, hmmm, let me see, how is that going to work? If you are trying to avoid tax then limit doesn't matter anyway.....

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:07 | 370354 Coldcall
Coldcall's picture


I dont think the problem is so much tax evasion. That ban would imply that a business or individual can only send more than 5000 euros out of the country through a bank. Its more or less a curb to slow capital leaving the country.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:09 | 370523 GoldBricker
GoldBricker's picture

Agreed. They don't want the kind of sucking sound that the Greek banks had.

The ban would also prevent large cash purchases, for things like used cars. In Mediterranean countries it was recently fairly common for houses to be bought with banknotes. What the ban means in this context is that you lose not only contractual protection for cash transactions, you are forced to use electronic money to comply with legal requirements (like registering a car or real-estate title).

Cash is the essential lubricant of the un-taxed economy, so it's a logical place to start.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:57 | 370497 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Maybe moonlighting?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:02 | 370343 papaswamp
papaswamp's picture

So do 3 transactions at 4100E

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:08 | 370521 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Here is the good old land of the free they call that "structuring".

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:04 | 370345 Fraud-Esq
Fraud-Esq's picture

They have a healthy deficit and, I'm betting, among the least insolvent and conservative banks in Europe. 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:05 | 370347 King_of_simpletons
King_of_simpletons's picture

Greece unravelled after they cancelled cash transactions beyond a certain limit. Nice.....

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:08 | 370355 carbonmutant
carbonmutant's picture

 I have a hard time imagining that a bank would refuse a purchase in gold bars... regardless of the amount.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:22 | 370692 Canucklehead
Canucklehead's picture

How do they know you are using gold?  By that little stamp on the bar?  They will take your name, account information, stall the transaction for a few days while they verify with the government sponsored entity that you actually gave them a gold bar.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:08 | 370357 callistenes
callistenes's picture

Where is the cash trans > 5,000 part or did I miss something?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:10 | 370362 oklaboy
oklaboy's picture

ohhhhh solooo miooooo....

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:54 | 370489 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

"oh solé mio", but whatever :)

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:13 | 370370 Hdawg
Hdawg's picture

Incremental cashless society anyone?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:21 | 370396 Jack H Barnes
Jack H Barnes's picture

A reverse bank robbery, they are forcing everyone to use electronic credits... 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:13 | 370372 Coldcall
Coldcall's picture

This could cause a run on banks in Italy when it gets out, if the government do not clarify. There will be all kinds of rumours and people will raid their cashpoints like what happened with Northern Rock in the UK.

Oh dear...



Mon, 05/24/2010 - 18:07 | 371024 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

That was my first thought also when I saw this.  People in Europe have lots of recent experience with bank and currency catastrophes.  They know damned well what this means, and I'd be surprised if they didn't act accordingly.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:16 | 370383 John McCloy
John McCloy's picture

Meanwhile America stays in the Zombie trance because of high quality journalism such as:

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:25 | 370410 docj
docj's picture

Everyone in my office (high tech, software, lots of people with lots of graduate degrees) this morning was whining that the LOST finale sucked last night.

Even try to mention that the world is slowly imploding into a death spiral of debt and (soon) deflation and they just sort of look at you, Dazed.  Lost.

They'll have much the same look on their faces when TSHTF, too.  Which will be delicious - for the 15-seconds between my witnessing it and then the realization that I'm neck deep in it with them.

But oh, those precious 15-seconds...

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:32 | 370431 Apostate
Apostate's picture

LOST is just a soap opera made appealing to the male demographic.

The schadenfreude can be validating. It's a little charming, sometimes, that people can remain so oblivious the the outside world. 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:47 | 370618 Ragnarok
Ragnarok's picture

I thought that was the WWE.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:14 | 370655 seventree
seventree's picture

This is the third comment I have seen today equating Lost viewers with mindless marching zombies. Probably many are.

Personally I will spend today searching for a grain of rational hope that I can salvage something for my future in the inevitable collapse of our society's collective fantasy. Then tonight I will spend 2 hrs watching a fictional fantasy (which probably will suck) on Hulu. Blissfully & briefly oblivious to the outside world. Tomorrow with its next installment of worsening prospects will come soon enough.

Speaking just for two of the married-retired-getting-along-the-best-we-can demographic.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:11 | 370671 Rusty_Shackleford
Rusty_Shackleford's picture


You just gotta love The Onion.

Pound for pound, I have gotten more laughs from there than almost anywhere else, except maybe the Seth MacFarlane franchise.

Just fxxking brilliant stuff.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 17:24 | 370950 OldTrooper
OldTrooper's picture

That's funny!  Almost makes me wish I had co-workers and TV so I knew what they were talking about!  Loved the last line.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:38 | 371296 Postal
Postal's picture

LOL I'm glad my place of employ doesn't allow streaming. I'd never get anything accomplished.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:24 | 371199 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

"Which will be delicious - for the 15-seconds between my witnessing it and then the realization that I'm neck deep in it with them."

Indeed. Here's to preparing for the best 15 seconds ever.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:39 | 371216 SamThomas
SamThomas's picture

I am a retail broker with one of the major Wall Street firms--about 24 years in the business.

What is totally amazing is the level of denial in our industry.  Bring up the kind of stuff that we have been discussing on ZH for the past year or so, or which have been articulated on a dozen other sites known to all of us, is simply off the reservation in the mainstream investment world. 

Articulate any of this stuff--get too emphatic about gold, or the possibility of another major crash, or insane debt levels leading to sovereign default or hyperinflation--you get the looks, you get the "gloom and doom" schtick, you get it all.

You wonder...if the so-called professionals don't want--not can't, but don't want--to face the music, what will have to happen before the average guy does?  What does it take for people to wake up??????????

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 22:54 | 371357 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture

They should wake up somewhere around $25 gallon of gasoline

Tue, 05/25/2010 - 00:35 | 371415 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

Most people are light sleepers.

Men in khakis with guns asking you and your family to leave everything and get on the bus?  Germany 80 years ago.

A flash of light, then blindness, then burning death?  Japan 70 years ago.

King George wants me to pay how much in taxes?  Boston 235 years ago.

I am hungry.  Where am I going to get my next meal?  The entire planet 2500 years ago.

Why is the WTC on fire?  NY, NY 9 years ago?


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:21 | 370398 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

New Headline: 'Brussels Calls Germany Naive"


Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:27 | 370413 Coldcall
Coldcall's picture

They are already bickering; Barroso looking to pork barrel any EU treaty changes. Unfuckingbelievable!

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:30 | 370421 molecool
molecool's picture

Italy is a prime example of a developing plutocracy run by banksters. How is that even legal? You are now being forced to use an intermediary (i.e. a bank) to perform any significant transaction. I've said it before and I say it again - crises are being fabricated by banksters as it's a landgrab, power, and profit opportunity.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:40 | 370454 Commander Cody
Commander Cody's picture

It is only illegal if banksters cannot profit from it.  Ask Obama or Congress, they know.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 21:50 | 371306 Trial of the Pyx
Trial of the Pyx's picture



I need a new avatar

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 13:55 | 370483 litoralkey
litoralkey's picture

For those unfamiliar the Eurozone, the Euro comes in 500Euro denomination bills.

Italy has now made it illegal to not report transactions with as little as 10 fiat currency notes and 1 fiat currency coin.



Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:02 | 370508 StevieMac
StevieMac's picture

If the austerity measures now being debated in European actually get passed, how long before the Italians, Spanish & Portuguese join the Greeks in massive street protests. Perhaps the Germans too in that they are being asked to pay for the excesses of others. 

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:05 | 370514 sweet ebony diamond
sweet ebony diamond's picture

does this apply to the banksters?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:17 | 370542 GoldBricker
GoldBricker's picture

Surely you jest. They don't need no stinkin' cash that's been fondled by the sweaty fingers of the bag-holders. Payment is via one deep-offshore account to another, executed and confirmed online.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:14 | 370536 The Rogue Trader
The Rogue Trader's picture

It's Capital Controls no matter how you spin it...

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:19 | 370545 JiangxiDad
JiangxiDad's picture

I've been waiting for the US gov't to make cash illegal. We're nearly at the technological point where all transactions could be electronic. Between that kind of thing,and socialized medicine, it's probably time to begin planning a break-out.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:24 | 370565 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

italian fascism is back with a vengeance....we hardly knew ye were gone, benito....

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:24 | 370567 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

Meanwhile, Berlusconi settles for 'fair separation agreement' of 300k euro per month alimony payout.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 14:43 | 370609 Freewheelin Franklin
Freewheelin Franklin's picture

Hasn't Europe been pushing for a "cashless society" for quite a while now?

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:04 | 370654 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

These capital controls are screaming that the situation in the banking system is more dire than some were willing to appreciate.  I suspect that Italy had to suffer at least 5% in outflows recently for such a measure to be considered and leaked.  Combined with the merger news in Spain and the picture gets clearer.  Melt up Monday indeed.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:30 | 370704 ConfederateH
ConfederateH's picture

Not a single American commented that the US government has already implemented capital controls that are just as restrictive as Italy's through the threat of JAIL time if W9 forms and QI agreements are not honored.  For those Americans so ignorant that they don't know what a QI is (Qualified Intermediary) these are the only banks that are allowed to accept deposits from Americans.  If the total of your deposits in a foreign bank exceed $10,000 you have to report this to the IRS or they may decide to put you in JAIL. 

Yes Americans, while an Italian can bank with any bank around the world, you have been coralled by the IRS into only a handful of offshore banks were you can put your wealth.  The IRS wants to have you handy when they decide to pluck your wealth.

And we haven't even started talking about the barbaric way that the IRS taxes gold.  

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:26 | 370830 ConfederateH
ConfederateH's picture

Also, don't forget the IRS requirement to fill out a 1099 form for every transaction exceeding $600!  That is about 500 euro's, 1/10 of the amount of the banned Italian transactions. 

America, wake up! You are sucking the rest of the world down the drain with you...

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 15:57 | 370745 mchawe
mchawe's picture

Is there a starting date ? The words "planned" and "aims" are used. Is the rest of the world getting softened up for this.

All it will do is give more impetus to the black (cash) economy.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:02 | 370752 mjv
mjv's picture

Does this mean if I was going to scam the tax system before, I would change course because of this?  If I wasn't going to account for and pay taxes on a EUR 12.5k transaction, why would I suddenly feel compelled to (a) follow the law and limit my cash transactions to EUR 5k, and (b) go through the work of filing the appropriate documentation to pay taxes on that transaction I wasn't going to pay taxes on before?

This is grasping at straws.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 16:13 | 370786 mchawe
mchawe's picture

A government in trouble ! Desperate for money.

All those bureaucrats seeing thier days are numbered. They will be out of jobs and having to do something like actually provide goods and services others are willing to pay for.

These are the kinds of measures devised by bureaucrats.

Every government must have a department devising new ways to tax.

The latest stupidity is the 40% on mining profits in Australia. Since then the A$ and the All Ords has plumeted.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 18:46 | 371074 66Sexy
66Sexy's picture

bank run time.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 19:47 | 371162 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

There goes that new Colnago EPS I wanted.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:12 | 371190 Budd Fox
Budd Fox's picture

Maybe a clarification is needed....if you show up at an Italain bank and ask cash for 50k Euro or a cashier's check at bearere for any amount you have, they will NOT refuse it. They will flash it to the Central Bank, ask you to come tomorrow, and have someone from the IRD equivalent make thorough check of your activities and ask you an explanation of what kind of transaction you may absolutely need to do in cash. have a satisfactory explanation ( and there is , objectively, none!) and you can do what you want.

The 12.5 K limit in in force in Italy for more than 10 yearsand it has not caused any run on the banks.

This will not stir anything...they are used to that...and the Italian Banks did recently experienced not an outflow of funds, but a huge inflow thanks to fiscal "pardon" measures that caused a few billions stashed in Switzerland to come back.

Don't make much on this ..Italy , in term of total debt, is better off that France and Germany. Her public debt sucks...but families are loaded, they are traditional savers.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 20:21 | 371200 John_Coltrane
John_Coltrane's picture

It would be interesting to see how  our government would react is a subset of their population (say the skilled subset: doctors, dentists, farmers, scientists, engineers etc.) refused accept anything other than cash for their labor (other than bartered goods/services with similarly skilled individuals).  Wonder how they'd get around that pesky little "this note is legal tender for all debts public and private" on all FRNs-the basis of the term fiat currency.  Would make an interesting supreme court test case.  I'm guessing it would be ruled unconstitutional.  This constraint on the legislature is why Hayek emphasized "the rule of law" as the basis of liberty and freedom, and why collectivistic economies lacking legal rules (eg China) are doomed to the dust bin of history.   

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