Monday, June 8, 2009

The Italian Economy: Day 6

Italy fact of the day:

76% of Italians own their own home.

Remarkable? Maybe not, but I learned this immediately after a disucssion on the Italian banking system. My professor has suggested that it is nearly impossible to get a mortgage unless you hvae a down payment of 50% or more. The Italian banking system is ridiculously conservative. Although this has kept them relatively immune from the global crisis, it essentially also keeps their economy stagnant at best.

Lots of other good stuff but those two figures together are absolutely stunning. Might post about Milan later today.

1 comment:

Pete Abbate said...

One more stunning figure from class today - Italy's Gross National Savings rate, as a percentage of GDP, hangs out right around 20%. America has spent some time in the negative. For me, that's a definite "wow."

Compared with the totality of knowledge which is continually utilized in the evolution of a dynamic civilization, the difference between the knowledge that the wisest and that which the most ignorant individual can deliberately employ is comparatively insignificant. ~Fredrich Hayek in The Constitution of Liberty