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iShares MSCI Italy Capped ETF (EWI)

  • Nov. 27, 2013, 3:27 AM
    • Italy's Senate is due to vote this evening on whether to expel former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi following his conviction for tax fraud in August.
    • Berlsuconi's prospects aren't looking good, as the left-of-center Democratic Party (PD) of current PM Enrico Letta and the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement have both said they'll vote against Berlusconi.
    • Following the break-up of his right wing grouping, in which one faction stayed in the government, his removal from the Senate is unlikely to affect the coalition.
    • The episode has every so often caused turmoil in the markets since Berlusconi's conviction, although investors have tended to shrug off recent developments, and the FTSE Mib is now +0.4%.
    • ETFs: Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 18, 2013, 5:18 AM
    • European shares are building on six consecutive weeks of gains, possibly gaining uplift from China's economic reform program.
    • Milan stocks (EWI) are +1.4% after Silvio Berlusconi's right-wing grouping split, probably sending him into opposition but leaving former allies in the government and making it more stable.
    • EU Stoxx 50 +0.45%, London +02%, Paris +0.3%, Frankfurt +0.1%, Madrid +0.5%.
    • U.S. stock futures: Dow +0.1%. S&P +0.1%. Nasdaq +0.1%
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 17, 2013, 1:25 AM
    • Italy's government appears to be a bit more stable after Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, the former secretary of Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom party, formed a new grouping called the New Center-Right and said it would stay in the coalition government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta.
    • Alfano made the move as he doesn't support Berlusconi's push for early elections due to the latter's likely expulsion from the Senate following his conviction for tax fraud in August.
    • Alfano, who took 30 Senators with him, has enough strength to stop Berlusconi from bringing down the government; he said the coalition would push forward with plans to reform the economy and the electoral system.
    • The soap opera that is Italian politics has every so often caused turmoil in the markets since Berlusconi's conviction, although investors have tended to shrug of recent developments.
    • ETFs: Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 14, 2013, 7:11 AM
    • Stock index futures are currently mixed, with the S&P 500 (SPY+0.15% and the Nasdaq 100 (QQQ-0.3% thanks to a 11% post-earnings dive in Cisco.
    • Excepting the periphery, Europe is moderately higher. Spain (EWP) -0.4%, Italy (EWI-0.9%. Asia was nicely higher overnight, particularly the Nikkei which continues a major move, now up about 6% for the week.
    • The 10-year Treasury yield is up one basis point to 2.72% ahead of Janet Yellen's confirmation hearing. Her prepared remarks released last night were of little surprise - the best way to a more normal policy in the future is unusually easy policy now.
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 14, 2013, 4:58 AM
    • Italy Q3 GDP (Q/Q): -0.1% versus -0.1% expected and -0.3% previous.
    • The quarterly contraction — which the national statistics office describes as "very mild" — is the ninth-straight for the eurozone's third-largest economy.
    • Strength reportedly came from the industrial sector, while services and farming  were weak in inflation-adjusted terms.
    • The full-year contraction now sits at 1.9%, meaning the country will have to see economic growth in Q4 if the government's forecast of a 1.8% contraction for the year is to prove accurate.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 12, 2013, 4:15 AM
    • Italian CPI -0.2% on month in October vs +0.1% in September and consensus of -0.3%.
    • On year, inflation 0.8% vs 0.9% and 0.7%.
    • The low inflation adds to a similar trend in Germany and helps strengthen the ECB's decision to cut interest rates last week.
    • The FTSE MIB is -0.2%. (PR)
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 11, 2013, 4:17 AM
    • Italy's industrial output rose 0.2% on month in September after dropping 0.2% in August but fell short of expectations of +0.3%.
    • On year, production dropped 3% vs -4.6% and -3.6%.
    • The FTSE MIB is -0.2%.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY (PR)
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 27, 2013, 2:15 AM
    • Italian markets are expected to be in focus this week after Silvio Berlusconi again undermined the stability of the ruling coalition, of which his center-right grouping is a member, by reviving his old Forza Italia party and suspending his existing grouping, the People of Freedom (PDL).
    • The move could split the right: Berlusconi and his supporters - who tried to bring down the government following the former prime minister's conviction for tax fraud - would be in Forza Italia, while the more "dovish" members of the right-of-center group - who blocked Berlusconi's efforts - would remain in the PDL.
    • The doves probably have enough members to stop the government from falling if the former Prime Minister were to withdraw his support, but it could be more difficult to force through economic reform.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 21, 2013, 4:06 AM
    • Italian industrial sales recovered to rise 1% on month in August after falling 0.8% in July.
    • Industrial orders +2% vs -0.5%.
    • FTSE MIB -0.3%. (PR)
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 20, 2013, 2:55 AM
    • Markets in Italy will be on watch tomorrow after a court in Milan banned former Prime Silvio Berlusconi from holding public office for two years following his conviction for tax fraud in August.
    • The country's Senate has to approve the decision - if it did so, Berlusconi would be expelled for six years - while he is also expected to appeal.
    • Earlier this month, Berlusconi tried to bring down the government over the issue, which has caused ructions in the markets, but the strategy failed.
    • The question now is whether he will try to use the threat of further political instability to pressure the Senate to allow him to stay.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
  • Oct. 16, 2013, 4:33 AM
    • Italy's cabinet has approved billions of euros of tax and spending reductions as it seeks to maintain its austerity policies and meet its deficit targets while ending a two-year recession.
    • The government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta will lower spending by €3.5B ($4.7B) in 2014-2016.
    • It will also reduce employee taxes by €5B and corporate taxes by €5.6B.
    • The FTSE MIB is bucking a week trend in Europe and is +0.5%.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 12, 2013, 9:03 PM
    • "All indicators are pointing to signs of life in the economy," Portugal's new Finance Minister Maria Luis Albuquerque said, in her first media interview.
    • Portugal may seek to borrow more money in the next few months "through an existing bond program [or by swapping] an existing bond for another with a longer maturity."
    • Albuquerque also said that although the country will likely not issue a new bond before the beginning of next year, Portugal is looking to regain full market access by mid-2014.
    • The country is expected to be the second bailed-out nation to return to the debt market after Ireland, marking a major milestone in the eurozone periphery's attempt to dig itself out of a crippling debt crisis.
    • Portugal is fully funded for 2013.
    • Periphery ETFs - EWP, EWI, GREK, EIRL
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 9, 2013, 7:49 AM
    • Taking advantage of receptive bond markets, Italy and Spain each launch new bond offerings today, with Italy issuing its first-ever 7-year note and Spain bringing back a 30-year bond for the first time in more than 4 years.
    • Only a week ago, the Italian government was on the verge of collapse, and Spain, feeling like it can borrow 30 years out on the curve ... wow. A year ago, Spanish 10-year notes were priced to yield 7.3%. Analysts today expect the 30-year paper to go at around 5.1%.
    • Previous: Spain is in a bull market.
    • Relevant ETFs: EWI, ITLY, ITLT, EWP.
    | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 4, 2013, 10:47 AM
    • An Italian Senate panel recommends Silvio Berlusconi be expelled from that body.
    • The criminally-convicted former PM roiled Italian markets in September by threatening to pull his party out of the governing coalition, but read the tea leaves and backed down earlier this week.
    • In a tough week for equities, EWI is ahead nearly 3% after today's 1.4% gain.
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 4, 2013, 6:58 AM
    • An Italian Senate committee has begun a hearing over whether Silvio Berlusconi should be expelled from Parliament following his conviction for tax fraud.
    • The full chamber will vote on the issue once the panel has delivered its verdict.
    • The hearing comes two days after Berlusconi pulled a u-turn and voted with the government against a no-confidence motion.
    • The former prime minister had roiled Italy by saying last weekend that he would withdraw his support for the ruling coalition.
    • The FTSE MIB is +1.4%.
    • ETFs - Stocks: EWI. Bonds: ITLT, ITLY
    | Comment!
  • Oct. 2, 2013, 8:09 AM
    • Berlusconi pulls a U-turn after putting his finger in the wind and says his party will vote to support the government of Enrico Letta.
    • Italy's MIB Index had tumbled in late September (and bond yields had risen) as Berlusconi had threatened to pull his party out of the governing coalition. A vote planned for later this weak could strip him of his Senate seat following a conviction over tax fraud. Off about 1% earlier in the session, the market's up 1% now.
    • EWI +0.9% premarket.
    • Bond ETFs: ITLY, ITLT.
    | Comment!
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EWI Description
The iShares MSCI Italy Capped Index Fund (the “Fund”) seeks investment results that correspond generally to the price and yield performance, before fees and expenses, of the MSCI Italy 25/50 Index (the “Underlying Index”).
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Country: Italy
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