Review of economic conditions in Italy

Publisher: Banco di Roma

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Other titles Review of the economic conditions in Italy
ISSN 0034-6799
OCLC 6392682
Material type Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Journal / Magazine / Newspaper, Internet Resource

Publications in this journal


  • No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: The article traces the factors that have kept Italy from turning to advantage the sweeping changes to the European and world economy over the past fifteen years. It identifies two in particular: the relatively slow internationalization of the Italian economy by comparison with others, especially Germany; and the fact that European monetary unification has been a zero-sum game, benefiting some countries (above all Germany) and penalizing others, Italy among them. An econometric test comparing Italy with the other main euro-area economies (Germany, France and Spain) provides interesting confirmation of this thesis. One implication is that internationalization represents an opportunity that Italy needs to exploit in the course of this decade in order to pick up the pace of economic growth.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2012 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: This essay analyzes the changes in the Italian economy in the last decade, a period of slow growth but one that also saw major corporate reorganizations spurred by globalization and the adoption of the euro. The external shocks interacted with alterations in the domestic macroeconomic environment, where labour market reforms and privatizations of state assets were the signal developments affecting production decisions. This process was spontaneous, not guided by economic policy, which was focused primarily on fiscal consolidation. The authors argue that the ability to react that firms displayed in those circumstances constitutes the foundation for growth-oriented policies, which in the current phase cannot do without suitable measures to revive domestic demand.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2012 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: Italy entered the Great Recession of 2008 with its public finances in a vulnerable situation. Consequently, in 2008-10 it could not pursue an expansionary fiscal policy: numerous measures were approved but their overall effect was zero. In 2010, with the worst phase of the recession apparently over, efforts to correct the deficit (begun in 2008) were renewed, mostly through expenditure cuts. In 2011 market tensions made new interventions necessary (above all increases in taxation), on an unprecedented scale. In the medium term the main constraint will be the commitment under the new Fiscal Compact to reduce the ratio of the public debt to GDR This will require primary surpluses of between 4% and 6% of GDP for a decade. Yet, the debt rule is less severe, if highly unfavourable macroeconomic scenarios are excluded, than the obligation to balance the budget that is about to be incorporated in the Constitution. To minimize the inevitable repercussions on the economy, it will be necessary to modulate the instruments available to budgetary policy carefully, taking account of the different effects, in the short term and the long term, of cuts in expenditure and increases in taxation.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2012 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: The literature has demonstrated abundantly how important a country's infrastructural endowment is to competitiveness, and scholars accordingly attribute strategic value to that variable in long-run growth paths. In Italy today there is another major reason for continuing to inquire into the quantity and quality of public capital installed in the various parts of the country. Federalist reform requires detailed knowledge of infrastructural disparities as a precondition for action to redress the balance. This article reconstructs the history of Italian public capital endowment since national unification, measuring, where possible, the gap between the different parts of Italy, at their different levels of development. Notwithstanding the lack of homogeneous data - inevitable over such a long period - and the ever-present methodological problems of estimation, the results clearly confirm the persistence of the infrastructural gap both between Italy and its main European competitors and within Italy between South and North. The article concludes with some considerations on the possible, and hopefully positive, impact of future measures for infrastructural equalization.
    No preview · Article · May 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: The essay examines some aspects of urban systems from the modern perspective of complexity. It focuses on the city as a factor and place of development, in an increasingly globalized world, starting from the theories of several recent and contemporary urban sociologists whose work proposes both models of the city and approaches to the management of its growth and development. Specifically, the essay deals with issues connected to transformations that have affected cities in recent decades, changing their internal structures and giving rise to new complex systems, such as networks of cities and global cities. Reference is made to social, economic, and spatial self-organization, with the gentrification of several Italian cities serving as a typical example. It is suggested that the approach to planning take on the form of assisted self-organization. Finally, the essay presents and analyzes an example of a fundamental modeling technique, agentbased modeling, indispensable to the study of complex systems in general, and urban systems in particular, when traditional mathematical models prove to be ineffective.
    No preview · Article · May 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · May 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: An analysis of the long-term evolution of Italy’s financial intermediaries must consider the macroeconomic constraints impinging on Italy during the early phases of its industrialization in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The context explains the structuring of the system and the models adopted by the central authorities for systemic stability and satisfactory rates of investment and GDP growth. The pronounced instability associated with a system of “mixed” or universal banks, insufficiently integrated with the financial market, led to the gradual development of an alternative, the “Beneduce system”, which recast bank-firm relations. The internal consistency of this model, designed to buffer exogenous shocks and stabilize capital formation, was progressively eroded in the period of rapid growth following the Second World War, undercutting the ability of the entire financial structure to allocate capital efficiently. In the years of stagflation, the financial deterioration of Italy’s large corporations required an overhaul of the financial system, deemed incapable of efficiently screening entrepreneurs and investment projects. In recent decades the return to universal banking, brought about by a partial institutional convergence, has not been accompanied by robust growth of the kind that Italy enjoyed during the so-called Age of Giolitti before the First World War.
    No preview · Article · May 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: This article investigates the roots, the nature and the consequences of the exit strategies that have been or are likely to be implemented in the euro-area countries following the financial and economic crisis. The institutional architecture of the European Monetary Union has a deflationary bias that will be exacerbated by the way in governments have set about fixing it, i.e. by means of exit strategies that are both premature and rigorous in the extreme. This will have an appreciable extra contractionary effect on the European economy.
    Preview · Article · Apr 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2011 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: The official data indicate a much less severe impact of the international crisis on employment and on the incomes of wage-earners and pensioners in Italy than might have been predicted. But the standard measure of unemployment agreed at international level has some shortcomings. For one thing, the "objective" definition of unemployment is a poor fit with the Italian labour market. And for another, the emergence of "semi-employment" – the alternation of brief periods of work with periods of unemployment or economic inactivity – and the considerable increase in labour hoarding make the state of the market hard to read. This article offers a more in-depth examination of the impact of the crisis, using labour force survey data to count workers on wage supplementation, the semi-employed and discouraged workers. The picture that emerges is one of a "long wave" of recession, which will inevitably last for years to come, until the pockets of implicit unemployment are reabsorbed and jobs are created for those now idled. And joblessness will be aggravated by the arrival in the labour market of new generations. So now is the time for reform of unemployment benefits, not just to provide income support for those caught up in the long wave but also to permit quicker reorganization of the productive system. The reform will have to highlight the diverse interests and roles of government and of the collective bargaining partners.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2010 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: Fiscal federalism threatens the power of the state in two ways: through the principle of tax territoriality, which, albeit accompanied by equalization measures, compresses the ability of central government to correct market outcomes and to ensure economic and territorial cohesion; and through the principle of autonomy of revenue and expenditure, which, if implemented, would strengthen subnational governments considerably, enabling them to curb and control central power. The state reacts to this dual threat with a strategy of resistance based on financial centralization. Law 42/2009, which sets out the measures for implementing fiscal federalism pursuant to Article 119 of the Constitution, offers ample scope for this strategy of resistance. The tension between polycentrism and state centralism that permeates the law operates not only on the plane ofprinciples (territoriality of taxes versus state-directed equalizing redistribution) but also at a deeper level, that of the concrete functionality of the circuit of financial responsibility and accountability. The risk of it working perversely is increased by the low degree of tax autonomy that the law assigns to regional and local governments. Under these circumstances, the reform is most likely to fail. This paper recommends two corrections, both regarding institutional arrangements. The first consists in removing the reward and sanction mechanisms of performance budgeting from the arena of political negotiation. The second involves strengthening subnational governments' participation in central government decisions. This implies an overhaul of the so-called conference system, which, as now configured, does not provide adequate instruments for balancing the demands of autonomy with those of centralism.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2009 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: Since the 1970s complexity as a property of systems has become a matter of study for the many scientific disciplines that share the view that the reductionist approach to describing phenomena is not always efficacious. The method of describing the parts of a system individually and then assembling these accounts in an overall description cannot capture the emerging phenomena that originate from the nonlinear interactions among the parts, nor can it identify the endogenous dynamics of complex systems in disequilibrium, which are at the origin of phenomena of self-organization that are unpredictable a priori. Economic systems appear to follow complex dynamics, particularly spatial economic systems, such as urban and regional systems. The interpretative framework of complexity proposes a new conception of economic agent and of the origin of observed nonlinear dynamics, and aims at models serving to complement that of marginalist economics founded on the postulate of Tiomo oeconomicus. In this work we present the complexity approach to spatial economic systems, typical of multidimensional complex systems, and discuss the foundations of the complexity approach to economic systems in general.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2009 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2009 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: A distinctive characteristic oj this paper is the joint consideration oj institutional changes and regional features to explain economic performance in the eight transition countries that became EU members in May 2004. After a review of the main literature on the "great transformation ", we present some stylized facts on initial conditions, institutional changes and national performances and discuss a number of empirical results on regional features. In addition, we describe some econometric results on the main determinants of regional income convergence as well as on GDP dynamics by highlighting, in particular, the role of institutional change.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2008 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: There is now a reawakening interest in income distribution, both in developed and developing countries. In developed countries, the press has drawn attention to the gulf between the enormous incomes of celebrities, corporate executives and professional athletes on the one hand and the much lower earnings of the rest of the society. In developing countries, generations of families live in seemingly endless poverty, while the rich live lavishly in well-staffed, gated mansions. Researchers are increasingly turning to income distribution analysis to understand the severity of income inequality in a country and to promote policies that can eventually produce a more equitable society. This paper applies income distribution models to obtain consistent summary measures of income distribution, including measures of inequality and poverty. Consistent measures permit a good appraisal of the country's income distribution and so may pave the way for more realistic policy analysis. This paper illustrates the procedures necessary to accomplish this and then elaborates some applications of the income distribution statistics that are derived.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2008 · Review of economic conditions in Italy
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    ABSTRACT: problems posed by the current configuration and recent modifications of financial relationships between the various levels of government. After reviewing the complexity of such relationships and the main limitations of an economic approach to fiscal federalism, the analysis turns to the reasons behind recent calls for greater decentralisation of decisions concerning the public finances. Specifically, it focuses on the changing priorities of economic policy objectives as resource "allocation" and income "redistribution," and "stabilisation". The article then describes the trilemma of fiscal federalism, consisting in "efficiency-autonomy-differentiation", "equity-uniformity-equalisation" and "stability-accountability." Finally, it indicates the necessary conditions for easing the tensions inherent in the trilemma.
    Preview · Article · May 2008 · Review of economic conditions in Italy

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2008 · Review of economic conditions in Italy