Rome, February 12 - The narrowing spread between 10-year Italian bonds and their German benchmark is not because of governments' efforts, but "thanks to European Central Bank President Mario Draghi," ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi said on Tuesday. The leader of the center-right coalition told an ANSA forum that "governments have no influence on the financial markets". The spread between 10-year Italian bonds and the German benchmark, a key measure of investor confidence in Italy. When outgoing Premier Mario Monti replaced Berlusconi as premier in November 2011, Italy's debt crisis looked in danger of spiralling out of control and the bond spread was over 500 points. Monti, a respected economist, has been credited with steering Italy from financial catastrophe and helping narrow the bond gap.
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di Giovanni Pastore