The man who ran Germany when the euro began trading has an idea to save the euro zone: the creation of a "United States of Europe."
The Italian government is still wrangling over how best to balance its budget, losing credibility with key leaders and opinion formers.
Silvio Berlusconi’s government in Italy could be about to make a serious mistake that would have major ramifications for the euro zone and global markets.
Food inflation may have been an abstract concept for Italian senators up until last week – that is, before the public got hold of a copy of the Senate restaurant menu that has reignited the debate over parliamentary perks.
High labor taxes and low visibility on economic growth and business climate are just some of the reasons that are keeping Italian businesses from offering jobs, especially long term contracts.
Italy has one of the highest savings rates in the OECD and holds considerable household wealth. In fact, the country's household wealth is five times as high as the country's gross domestic product (GDP). None of this appears to add up with the country's miserable public finances.
It was billed as one of the most important speeches of Silvio Berlusconi’s political career, amid a crisis that threatens to engulf Italy and the euro zone. Unfortunately when he stood in front of lawmakers, his pledges on boosting growth offered very few details and led to skepticism from analysts.
He has survived criminal charges and if you believe all the stories, bunga bunga parties, but could the latest debt crisis be the final nail in the coffin for Silvio Berlusconi's political career?
In an interview with CNBC at the end of May the boss of Unicredit, Federico Ghizzoni, played down fears over Italian government debt and claimed his country's problem was not a huge external debt but a lack of growth.
Some ill-chosen words from Silvio Berlusconi about his finance minister and a warning from S&P have seen Italian bond yields soaring and investors across the globe beginning to fret over the world’s third biggest issuer of government debt.
Late last week, Berlusconi managed to undo years of work aimed at keeping Italy out of the sights of the bond vigilantes when he was reported to have launched a scathing attack on his fiscally conservative finance minister, Giulio Tremonti.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel pressed Monday for a quick agreement on a new rescue package for Greece, and said she is confident that Italy will push through an austerity plan.
Premier Silvio Berlusconi has sat down with the enemy, telling an opposition newspaper that he is too old to have had all the sexual encounters he is accused of by Italian prosecutors.