Italian Economic Health Worst Since Mussolini

Italian debt jumped in 2012 to 127 percent of gross domestic product from 120.8 percent a year earlier. As Bloomberg notes, that's the most since 1924, when Mussolini won 64 percent of the popular vote in elections that opposition members said were marked by irregularities. While the only irregularities in the current election were the electorates dismissal of the status quo - as Monti’s policy mix prompted 25 percent of voters to back the anti-austerity stance of comedian-turned-politician Beppe Grillo’s Five Star Movement, which was the single most voted party in the country - it appears people have misunderstood the concept of austerity as spending has risen almost 3% in the last three years and taxes have not kept pace.

 

 

Charts: Bloomberg