Over half of Italian families are not saving, according to a new report published by Banca Nazionale di Lavoro and Centro Einaudi. The percentage of families setting aside part of their income has fallen consistently over the last three years from 62 per cent in 2003 to 55 per cent in 2004 to 49 per cent this year. Economic pessimism has also risen this year with 10.6 per cent of the population believing their income to be insufficient or completely insufficient as opposed to 8.3 per cent in 2004. More people from 8 per cent up to 11 per cent also believe that their pension provisions will be inadequate for their retirement. However, the perceived lack of funds has not damaged consumption, which continues to rise, fuelled as it is by a credit boom that has created debt equal to 28 per cent of Italian GDP. The report also finds that a recent reduction in the rate of Italys Irpef (income tax) appears to have had too little benefit for most families to have made a difference. The report is based on a survey of 1000 savers carried out by Doxa, an Italian research institute of statistical trends and public opinion.
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