Tuesday, 20 September 2011

S&P Downgrades Italy; Greece Given Ultimatum

RussiaToday—Sept. 20, 2011— Italy's credit score has taken a knock - financial ratings firm Standard and Poor's has downgraded the country by one notch, deepening the Eurozone's economic woes. The agency also gave a gloomy forecast for the country's ability to get itself out of trouble. Italy's Premier Silvio Berlusconi has criticized the decision calling it 'out of touch with reality'. S&P said its move was prompted by Italy's weak economic growth and fears the government will fail to deal with its huge debt, despite parliament recently passing an austerity budget. The downgrade now means it could be more expensive for Italy to borrow money to pay its creditors. Meanwhile cash-strapped Greece has been given an ultimatum by EU and IMF offcials to enforce deeper budget cuts if it wants to avoid going bankrupt early next month. That's after Eurozone leaders chose to wait until October before ruling on whether to release the next 8 billion Euro bailout. But economists say more austerity measures will only make matters worse.