For a country that has 24 prime ministers in 40 years, Italians are no stranger to volatile politics. However this election, according to the exit polls puts the eurosceptic 5-star (M5S) as high as 32% from initial suggestions it would win 28%. Former Prime Minister Berlusconi’s Forza Italia and Matteo Salvini’s right-wing League (formerly Lega Nord) taking between 32% in the lower house and Senate. Lega’s leader Matteo Salvini has said, “We don’t have a euro in our pockets. We have a German mark which they called the euro.”. The incumbent PD is looking to finish a distant 3rd place With 20-23% of the vote.
Italy requires a 40% lead to form a majority. M5S vows it won’t form a coalition. What is clear is that 60% of Italians voted for parties that are anti EU. While the EU believes it is a club worth its weight in gold, a growing number of its members seem to be rejecting much of what it stands for.
A quick one but a chart that maps the average strength of the NO vote vs the average youth unemployment rate in Italy. Similar to the statistics revealed from the chart in my report yesterday – the higher the unemployment rate the higher the NO vote – predominantly from provinces in the south.
It would appear Mr Draghi and co have propped up Italian bonds and the euro which undoubtedly squeezed shorts but as much as the motto to never fight the central bank, eventually the weight of market forces can’t sustain this indefinitely.
Not even the ECB can Make Italy Great Again. The ECB is about as welcome as the Carthaginians at the gates of Rome at this juncture. I recommend signing up to Beppo Grillo’s blog. It is in English too – gives more perspective on the shenanigans in Italian politics. Sure there is some bias but some of the stories read like Nero watching Rome burn.