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Italy: Fitch calls on Monti to end austerity

last update: August 21, 14:43

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Rome, 21 Aug. (AKI) - Ratings agency Fitch called on Italy to end austerity programs that are crimping possibilities of growth for the eurozone's third-largest economy.

"Italy doesn't need more austerity measures, those that have been launched are enough, now reforms are necessary," said the agency's sovereign-ratings chief, David Riley, in a Tuesday interview with Bloomberg TV.

The Italian economy has contracted for four consecutive quarters as the emergency government passed measures to boost taxes and cut spending.

The moves by prime minister Mario Monti and other so-called technocrat ministers were designed to lower Italy's 1.95 trillion euros in debt and create investor confidence. But with fewer euros in their pay, Italians have reeled in household spending sending waves into the economy that has hurt businesses and boosted unemployment.

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