In recent days the European stock markets suffered heavy losses, weighing on the list of European concerns about the accounts of some European Union countries. Initially, the country that aroused the greatest concern was Greece. Greece joined in the last days in Spain and Portugal.
The EU commissioner for economic and monetary affairs, Joaquin Almunia, had said in recent days that Spain and Portugal have "common problems" with Greece, also spoke after the head of the IMF, Dominique Strauss Khan, who declared that the crisis in Spanish is "very strong".
The U.S. media telling the story you are referring to the turmoil that would be the countries' PIIGS "where PIIGS is an acronym formed from the initials of the names of some European countries, Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain. An obvious play on words with the English term pigs, which means pig.
Now that the economic situation is not one of the best is certainly not new. But the Italian economic situation is certainly not the worst or the worst.
Looking at some data point out that by the situation in many other countries, although very important, is worse in some cases substantially, than the Italian.
The Italian public debt ( here the data from 1885 to 2001) is one of the highest in the world, but not the highest. At 31 December 2008, the Italian public debt amounted to 1663 billion €, while the GDP stopped to 1.572 trillion euro, or the public debt stood at 105.8% of GDP. A very high ratio, but (much) lower than that of Japan (to date is the second largest world economy), in which the deficit-GDP ratio stood at 170%. The French public debt at the end of 2008, it reached 1.327 trillion to € (68% of GDP). The public debt in Germany in 2007 was nearly 1600 billion euro (66% of GDP). The U.S. public debt for 2010 is estimated to be equal to 9.881 trillion dollars (67.1% of GDP). It is expected to grow to reach U.S. $ 12.594 trillion (68.5% of GDP) in 2014.
The majority of U.S. public debt is held by foreign governments. China is the leader of the U.S. creditors, holding U.S. Treasury bonds for nearly $ 800 billion, according to 2009 data . In second place of this ranking is Japan with 751 billion dollars of U.S. treasury bonds. After that, much later, the UK, with nearly $ 250 billion.
Italy has U.S. treasury bonds for 17.4 billion dollars. France 24.6 billion, Germany 56.3 billion.
The Italian foreign debt (estimated) in 2008 amounted to 1060 million dollars.
Japan had a foreign debt in 2007 (thus before the crisis), to 1.492 trillion dollars. Spain, in 2008, had a foreign debt more than double over the Italian one, amounting to 2.478 billion dollars. France had in 2007 a foreign debt of more than 4 times higher than the Italian one, amounting to 4.396 trillion dollars. Even Germany had a foreign debt in 2007, more than 4 times higher than the Italian one, amounting to 4.489 trillion dollars. Britain had, in 2009, a foreign debt of more than 9 times the Italian one, amounting to 9.191 trillion dollars.
The United States had, in 2009, a foreign debt of more than 13 times the Italian one, amounting to 13.773 trillion dollars.
External debt per capita in Italy was in 2008, amounting to $ 18,235. External debt per capita for Japan was equal in 2007 to $ 4528. For Spain, amounted in 2008 to $ 49,619 (nearly three times the Italian one). For France amounted in 2007 to $ 68,183 (nearly 4 times the Italian one). For Germany amounted in 2007 to $ 54,604 (3 times higher than in Italian). For Great Britain amounted in 2009 to $ 150,673 (more than 8 times higher than in Italian).
For the United States amounted in 2009 to $ 42,343 (more than double the Italian one).
The debt of Italian households rose in 2009, but much less than other countries. The average debt per household was in 2009 to € 21,270 in Italy, 36,150 in France, € 37,785 in Germany, € 55,886 in Spain and € 63,477 in Britain.
Also of note in the USA, in 2009, more than 100 banks have failed .
The Italian GDP for 2009 is estimated to be over 2000 billion dollars. Italy exported goods and materials to almost 370 billion dollars (estimated) in 2009, sixth place in the " classification of exports . "
Probably the U.S., or in general in the Anglo-Saxon world, grappling with a serious crisis, would do better to think about solving their (many) problems ( 1 , 2 , 3 ) rather than sit and watch other people's problems.