Italian economy slowing - Visco

More vulnerable than 10 yrs ago if new crisis-Bank of Italy head

(ANSA) - Rome, July 10 - Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco said Tuesday that there were several good signs for Italy's economic outlook even though growth was slowing. He added, however, that Italy would be more vulnerable if there were a new economic crisis than it was 10 years ago. The governor told the assembly of banking association ABI that the Italian economy was slowing "along with the other main economies", saying that "deceleration signals spread to the spring".
    He said the positive signals included "household and business confidence that remains high", an increase in bank lending and an "improvement in the labour market". But Visco also bemoaned the fact that "in Italy the reform path has lost momentum due to fears about the costs, which are often immediate, and doubts about the benefits, which mature gradually and in relatively long periods of time.
    "In these conditions, faced with a new crisis, today we would be much more vulnerable than we were 10 years ago...
    "In Italy and in Europe the reforms launched to reduce the fragility highlighted by the crisis are still to be completed".