Italy’s populists covet central bank and its gold
Italy’s populists covet central bank and its gold from GATA
TDC Note – Note how the authors uses words as a weapon. “confrontation” “attack” even using words like “establishment” and antiestablishment” to sway the reader – that’s us – in a particular way. Central banks around the world are PRIVATELY owned – they are not part of government which is the whole idea behind “establishment” – it’s another lie by leftist media types. It’s a joke and we see right through it!!! hahahaha
By Giovanni Legorano
The Wall Street Journal
Wednesday, April 3, 2019
ROME — Italy’s ruling populists pushed ahead this week with efforts to seize control of the central bank and its gold reserves, stepping up their confrontation with a symbol of the country’s establishment.
With two laws targeting the Bank of Italy under debate in parliament, the campaign is the latest attack on Italy’s independent institutions by leaders of the governing coalition, which is led by the antiestablishment 5 Star Movement and the nativist League.
The parties depict the central bank as a symbol of a technocratic elite aloof from the needs of ordinary Italians. Hundreds of thousands of small individual investors lost billions of dollars after several Italian banks failed in recent years, causing widespread anger against the Bank of Italy and previous governments.
“We need a change of course at the Bank of Italy if we think about what happened in the last years,” Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio, leader of the 5 Star Movement, said in February.
Lawmakers from 5 Star are asking Parliament to pass two draft laws that have ignited a national controversy over the independence of the Bank of Italy. While the fate of the bills is uncertain, the prolonged scrutiny is testing an institution whose credibility is crucial for the stability of the Italian economy.
One law would instruct the central bank’s owners, most of them private banks, to sell their shares to the Italian Treasury at prices from the 1930s.
The other law would declare the Italian people to be the owners of the Bank of Italy’s reserve of 2451.8 metric tons of gold, worth around $102 billion at current prices. Such a move could in theory widen the scope for selling the gold and reduce the bank’s reserves, which help underpin the financial system.
“The gold belongs to the Italians, not to the bankers,” said Giorgia Meloni, leader of the Brothers of Italy, a far-right opposition party that supports both bills. “We are ready to battle everywhere in Italy and to bring Italians to the streets if necessary.”
The 5 Star Movement and the League support public ownership of the gold reserves, and with backing from parties comprising 60% of lawmakers, the draft law has enough support to pass. Lawmakers from 5 Star also support nationalizing the central bank, while the League hasn’t decided yet, leaving the bill short of a majority with around 40% support.