How things seem to change on Bloomberg from one day to the next. Earlier this week they were - erroneously - trying to convince us that the underlying employment situation was improving, today they tell us:
Italian consumer confidence unexpectedly dropped in June to the lowest level in a year as rising interest rates and higher gasoline costs left families with less disposable income.
The Rome-based Isae Institute's index, based on a poll of 2,000 households, dropped to 107.2, the lowest since June 2006, after a downward revised 109.4 in May. Families have seen their disposable income shrink as rising interest rates make consumer loans and mortgages more costly, while oil prices above $60 a barrel are adding to the financial strain.
Households have grown more pessimistic about prospects for the economy and their ability to save. A sub-index measuring confidence in the general economic situation dropped to 89.3, the lowest in more than a year, from 95.8 last month, while families' have never had a tougher time to set money aside and sometimes have to dip into their savings to balance their household budgets, the report showed.
Really my general impression is that the Italian economy is now slowing significantly, but I think we need to see some more data to get a clear picture
Italy Economy Real Time Data Charts
Edward Hugh is only able to update this blog from time to time, but he does run a lively Twitter account with plenty of Italy related comment. He also maintains a collection of constantly updated Italy economy charts together with short text updates on a Storify dedicated page Italy - Lost in Stagnation?