The solution to the problems we are facing is effective multilateralism, based on inclusive and open dialogue. Italy will continue this path, ensuring its contribution of ideas and resources. 

From Mario Draghi's speech at the general debate of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly. 

 

 The debate of ideas 

 

Italy and the "Gli Stati Generali dell'Export" 

Trade is discovering new geographical areas in our times, and the definition "geocommercial areas" sounds very modern. Historically, export has always been, and still will be, the real keystone of our GDP. However, its dynamics should be more homogeneous among the various regions. This issue will be discussed during the third edition of "Gli Stati Generali dell'Export," in Marsala from 24 to 26 September, to rethink the approach to European and international markets. Here to learn more.

 

Studies, research and numbers 

 

REACT-EU 2021: the European Commission’s plan allocating 4.7 billion euros to support jobs, skills, and people most in need in Italy 

As announced in a press release, the European Commission granted 4.7 billion euros to Italy under the REACT-EU Plan to support the pandemic crisis response and contribute to the social-economic recovery. The additional funds will support youth and female employment, education and training and provide tailor-made services for job seekers. In addition, the resources are aimed to protect jobs in small businesses in the regions such as Abruzzo, Molise, Campania, Puglia, Basilicata, Calabria, Sicily and Sardinia. Here is a detailed article. 

Istat: employment grows in the second quarter. Services and construction are advancing. 

In the second quarter of 2021, the labour input, measured in terms of FTE (Full-time equivalent work units-Italian acronym ULA)), increased both on a quarterly basis (+ 3.2% compared to the first quarter of 2021) and on an annual basis (+18, 3% compared to the second quarter of 2020). The Ministry of Labour revealed these data in the quarterly note on employment published in collaboration with Istat, Inps, Inail and Anpal. On a monthly basis, employment increased in term of employed people (+ 1.7%) and positions in the non-agricultural private sector (+ 0.6%). For the latter, the increase is the result of a slight improvement in industry (+ 0.3%, +11 thousand positions), slightly more significant in services (+ 0.5%, +42 thousand positions) and marked in construction (+ 3.2%, +30 thousand positions). Here the note by Istat. 

OECD:  Italy's GDP will grow by 5.9% in 2021, 4.1% in 2022 

According to OECD's Interim Economic Outlook, Italy's GDP will grow by 5.9% in 2021 and 4.1% in 2022. OECD revised the estimates for Italy upward by 1.4 points for 2021 and down by -0.3 points for 2022, compared to the economic forecasts of last May. Global GDP should grow by 5.7% in 2021 and 4.5% in 2022. "Global GDP", the note reads, "has now exceeded the pre-pandemic level, but gaps in production and employment remain in many countries, particularly in emerging markets and developing economies, where vaccination levels are low. "The growth forecast for the eurozone is 5.3% in 2021 and 4.6% in 2022. Here to analyse OECD estimates. 

  

Istat: industrial turnover up by 19.1% in July 

n July, Istat estimates that the seasonally adjusted industrial turnover index grew by 0.9% on a monthly basis.  The calendar-adjusted industrial turnover index (calendar working days were 22 against 23 in July 2020) grew by 19.1% (+ 19.0% on the domestic market and + 19.2% in the non-domestic market). The increase on a monthly basis is due to the positive trend on the domestic market (+ 1.7%) while the non-domestic market recorded a decrease of 0.8%.  According to Istat, in the May-July quarter, the overall index grew by 4.4% averagely compared to the previous three months (+ 3.6% on the domestic market and + 5.8% on the non-domestic market). In July, the seasonally adjusted turnover indices increased in the main industrial sectors, for capital goods (+ 4.8%) and energy (+ 3.6%) and fell for intermediate goods (-1.2%) and consumer goods (-0.9%). Here the note by Istat. 

Eurozone Ihs Markit: the recovery slowed down in September, PMI index at a 5-month minimum. 

The flash Eurozone PMI index fell to 56.1 from 59 in August due to difficulties that slowed down business and 21-year high costs. The slowdown affected both the service sector (56.3 from 59 in August) and manufacturing (58.7 from 61.4). According to Markit, the downward trend reflects the problems in the distribution chain and the concerns about the pandemic. At the same time, employment fell to a minimum in four months, decreasing both in the manufacturing and the service sectors due to concerns about future supply and demand stability. Here for more information. 

Production in the Construction sector: Istat estimates for July 2021 

According to Istat, in July 2021, the seasonally adjusted construction production index decreased by 1.9% compared to June. The decline also affected the quarter with a decrease of 0.5% compared to the previous one. However, the seasonally adjusted construction production index remained well above the pre-pandemic levels of February 2020. On an annual basis, the raw construction production index increased by 5.4 %, while the calendar-adjusted index recorded a growth of 9.1%. Here the Note by Istat. 

Bankitalia-ECB: Eurozone towards solid growth in the third quarter 

The recovery of global economic activity continues, although recent surveys indicate a slowing pace of expansion, particularly in emerging economies. According to the latest Bulletin of the ECB, also published by the Bank of Italy, global GDP growth (excluding the euro area) is projected to increase by 6.3 per cent this year before slowing to 4.5 per cent in 2022 and 3.7 per cent in 2023. Compared to previous projections, foreign demand has been revised upwards: it is expected to grow by 9.2 per cent this year, 5.5 per cent in 2022 and 3.7 in 2023. Here and here to learn more. 

Istat: house prices up by 1.7% in the second quarter of 2021 

According to ISTAT estimates, in the second quarter of 2021, the House Prices Index - HPI (Italian acronym - IPAB) concerning residential properties purchased by households for own-occupancy or investment increased by 1.7% compared to the previous quarter and 0.4% compared to the same period of 2020 (+ 1.7% in the first quarter of 2021). The increase in house prices is mainly due to the prices of new dwellings (+ 2.0%, down from + 4.0% in the first quarter). The prices of existing dwellings also rose slightly (+ 0.1%) but slowed down compared to + 1.2% in the previous quarter. The positive trends occur in a context of sharp expansion in sales (+ 73.4% is the rate of change in the second quarter of 2021 registered by the Real Estate Market Observatory of the Revenue Agency). Here the note by Istat. 

Inps - Decontribuzione Sud: 592,000 contracts in 6 months 

According to the Report on social security contribution subsidies, in 2020, employment increased by 20%, thanks to the  "Decontribuzione Sud" incentive introduced by the "Agosto" Decree. The first six months of 2021 recorded 592,000 new employment contracts. The subsidized employment contracts and transformations totalled 883,596, increasing by 221.5% compared to the first half of 2020 and 112.6% compared to the first half of 2019.  Moreover, as reported in "Osservatorio sulla Cassa Integrazione", between 1 April 2020 and 31 August 2021, INPS authorized 6.2 billion hours of CIG (Wage Guarantee Fund) and allowances. During the health emergency, from 1 April 2020 to 31 August 2021, INPS approved 6,293.2 million CIG hours: 2,669.5 million ordinary CIG hours, 2,229.2 million allowances from solidarity funds 1,394.6 million for "CIG in deroga" (derogatory Wage Guarantee Fund). Here the INPS Press Releases section. 

Istat: consumer confidence peaks in September but declines for businesses 

In September, the consumer confidence index rose (from 116.2 to 119.6), reaching the highest value since 1998, the beginning of the historical series. On the other hand, the business confidence composite index decreased slightly (from 114.0 to 113.8). According to Istat, the sharp increase in the consumer confidence index reflects widespread optimism about the general and current economic situation. Concerning the components of the confidence indices, the manufacturing industry recorded less positive assessments on order books and less favourable expectations on production. In construction, all components of the index are improving. Here the Note by Istat. 

The voice of Stakeholders 

 

 

Confcommercio: consumption up by 1.2% in September 

In August, the Confcommercio Consumption Indicator (Italian acronym ICC) showed a slowing demand for goods despite increasing on an annual basis (+1.2%). The slow and gradual recovery is supported only by services (+7.4%). After a slowdown in August, GDP grew in September (+0.9%), and the year-on-year increase should be 6.5%. According to estimates, the overall increase in the third quarter is equal to 2.2% compared to the second and 3.3% on an annual basis. The snapshot provided by “Congiuntura Confcommercio” of September shows a scenario quite close to the one described by the data of the preceding issue. The evolution of the pandemic continues to be a crucial factor in the changing economic situation. In 2021 the increase should almost exceed 6% on an annual basis confirming expectations. Here to learn more. 

Confartigianato: commodity prices rocket, 653 thousand SMEs under pressure 

"Energy prices are pushing consumer price indices up, while the rise in raw material costs is squeezing the margins of manufacturing and construction companies, putting the ongoing recovery at risk." This snapshot emerges from the focus of the Confartigianato Research Department on increase of commodity prices. According to Confartigianato, in August, the inflation rate rose to 2% (from + 1.9% in the previous month): core inflation, net of energy and fresh food, remains stable at + 0.6%, while energy products grew by 19.8% (from + 18.6% in July). In 2021, considering the average of September 2020, the Single National Price (abbreviated PUN in Italian) of electricity has risen by 138%, the price of gas (yesterday's market) by 228%. Fuel prices also increased by 25.5%. Within the manufacturing and construction sectors, 653 thousand micro and small enterprises with 2 million and 182 thousand employees are exposed to the price shock. 442 thousand are artisan enterprises with 1 million and 100 thousand employees. Here to learn more. 

 

Innovation 

 

Insurtech industry: investments reach 60 million. But Italy is at the bottom of the pile in EU

In line with the rest of the world, from the US to Europe, Italy also experienced record investments in insurtechs. In the first half of the year, they reached 60 million euros, with over +20% compared to the same period of 2020, and by the end of the year, Italian investments will probably exceed 100-120 million. This snapshot emerges from the Insurtech Investment Index, developed by the IIA-Italian insurtech association, involving Italian players and the Fintech & Insurtech Observatory of the Politecnico di Milano. However, the figure appears modest compared to the over two billion recorded in leading European countries, such as Great Britain, Germany, and France. According to the report, the gap with the rest of the Old Continent is because, in Italy, insurance companies still prefer to develop most of their technological solutions internally and do not invest in insurtech startups. Here a detailed article. 

Software Enterprises: turnover of over 240 billion dollars. Investments are growing

The pandemic-driven digitization needs have generated a 4.1% year-on-year increase in the business applications market, with worldwide revenue of 241 billion dollars. The new report "Worldwide enterprise applications software forecast, 2021-2025: a digital-first world requires next-generation applications" revealed these data. Moreover, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC), providing five-year forecasts for the business applications market, the top 5 enterprise application vendors in 2020 were Sap, Salesforce, Oracle, Intuit and Microsoft, which together accounted for 22.8% of global revenue. According to the report, In 2025, the turnover will reach 334 billion. Here to learn more. 

Ultra-broadband, Web tax and digital PA: Italians’ priorities for the implementation of the NRRP 

Digital technologies and technological infrastructures, starting from Telecommunication networks, represent the keystone for achieving the NNRP goals. This result emerged from the data presented by EY in collaboration with Luiss Business School, which carried out two surveys in collaboration with Swg on a sample of citizens and entrepreneurs. 92% of the managers consider the NRRP a unique opportunity to relaunch the country, but 2 out of 5 Italians believe that 50% of the available resources will remain unused. 75% of the surveyed hoped to speed up procedures and reduce costs for companies that work with the Public Administration, while for 57%, the priority is completing the digitalization of PA. Here to learn more. 

 

Local Authorities 

 

Fondazione Etica: Rapporto Rating Pubblico on 109 regional capitals 

The capacity of public administrations has always been a critical factor for our country's social and economic development. Local administrators, citizens, and businesses usually discuss services and public policies concerning nursery schools, public parks, urban planning regulations, social housing, etc. However, the debate rarely focuses on Municipalities’ or Regions’ administrative capacity, which is essential to provide those services and implement policies. The new survey “Rapporto Rating Pubblico” conducted on 109 regional capitals entitled "Municipalities and the challenge of sustainability" was realized by Fondazione Etica to provide specific factual guidelines for public action. The report highlights three fundamental factors: The information to evaluate local administrations' capacity; 

the variability of the results between the different Municipalities;the existing possibility to improve those capabilities. Here for more information and to download the Report. 

 

The world of MEF 

 

Mef:  253 billion more up to June thanks to the electronic invoice 

In the first half of the year, electronic invoicing of businesses and professionals recorded an increase in the VAT taxable amount of 21.3% compared to 2020, reaching almost 253 billion euros. These data emerge from the latest report on electronic invoicing published on the Finance Department's website. The increase in the VAT base corresponds to almost 80% of the overall loss recorded in the same period of last year. According to the overview provided by Mef, the increase was more significant for natural (+ 24.1%) than for legal persons (+ 21.2%). The leading sectors are construction, mining and manufacturing. Here the analysis by the Finance Department. 

Mef: pending disputes down in the first half of the year

At the end of the first half of 2021, for the first time, pending tax disputes dropped below 300 thousand units (297,458), with a decrease of 16.62% compared to 30 June last year and 13.95% compared to the end of 2020. The Ministry of Economy and Finance announced this result in the quarterly Report on tax litigation of April-June 2021. According to the Report, new disputes rose to 37,442 in the second quarter of 2021, increasing by 6.11% compared to 2020. On the other hand, 54,136 were settled, an increase on an annual basis of 139.88%, highlighting a robust recovery of the judicial activity with values in line with 2019 when the Covid-19 emergency legislation was not in force. Here the press release by Mef. 

The Revenue Collection Agency: green lights for at the "online access point" to receive assistance via video call 

The "online access point" of the "Revenue collection Agency" is available to receive assistance and carry out operations with a simple video call. According to the press release, the first "remote" appointments with an operator of the Agency will start from 27 September. Still, taxpayers can already book a video call in the reserved area of the site. In this first test phase, the service is available for Rome, Lecce, Brescia and Bari. Milan, Modena and Bologna will follow in the first half of October. The service will then be progressively extended. You can talk and ask for assistance quickly and easily from your PC, smartphone or tablet, without moving from home. Here the press release by the Revenue Collection Agency. 

MEF: credit and liquidity for households and businesses

Moratoriums are still active (pursuant to law and voluntary) for a total value of approximately 69 billion, against about 620,000 suspensions granted. Requests for guarantees on new bank loans for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises submitted to the Guarantee Fund for SMEs exceeded 200 billion. The loans guaranteed through the “Garanzia Italia” fund of Sace amount to € 28,3 bn, out of 3,093 requests received. These are the main results of the survey carried out by the task force set up to promote the implementation of the measures to support liquidity adopted by the Government during the Covid-19 emergency. The task force includes the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Ministry of Economic Development, the Bank of Italy, the Italian Banking Association, Mediocredito Centrale and Sace. Here the Press Release by MEF. 

The Revenue Agency: green lights for the cancellation of payment notices under 5 thousand euros 

The cancellation of tax payment notices under 5 thousand euros has started. The Revenue Agency explains that the cancellation of the payment notices not yet paid and appealed before 2010 will not apply to everyone: taxpayers, natural persons, entities, or companies, must have a taxable income up to 30 thousand euros. The Revenue Agency will check the taxpayers' requisites, reporting the tax codes of taxpayers exceeding the income, and will give the green light for the cancellation by 30 September. The collection agent will automatically cancel the notice of payment. Here the Note by the Revenue Collection Agency.