Italy’s third-quarter GDP figures will be released today. They are expected to show a slight uptick to 0.5% from last quarter’s 0.3% growth.
The figures point to an Italian economy that is finally seeing a recovery—albeit a slow one—from the global financial crisis. Italy has posted four straight months of increasing industrial growth–until a small dip this month–and has seen its sky-high unemployment rate trend downward.
Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni’s government has forecast growth of 1.5% for the year. If he meets that projection, it would be Italy’s best showing since 2010. Yet, Italy lags within the EU, which is projected to see 2.2% growth this year.
As long as structural problems remain, recovery will be limited; the public debt of 132% of GDP is staggering, corruption is rampant and education is underfunded. Those headaches and more probably won’t be fixed soon—next year’s general election will likely result in an unwieldy minority or coalition government more concerned with internal squabbling than economic management.
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