On The Road: Italy – Episode 2

Published on
February 8th, 2019
37 minutes

On The Road: Italy – Episode 2

On The Road ·
Featuring Stephen Diggle

Published on: February 8th, 2019 • Duration: 37 minutes

In episode two, Grant and Steve visit Siena, where the conflict that lies at the heart of Italian culture is examined, the country’s fractious relationship with the EU is put under the microscope and the importance of once-mighty Banca Monte Dei Paschi’s fall from grace is revealed. Filmed December 2018 in Siena, Italy.


  • sp
    simon p.
    1 October 2020 @ 00:16
    Wonderful Material, an absolute pleasure to watch on a rainy weekday evening. Thanks RV
  • KB
    K B.
    23 February 2020 @ 02:21
    What’s the title of the music at 32 > 22 ?
  • NA
    N A.
    8 March 2019 @ 00:06
    Seems like so far Taleb could sum up Italy itself and within the EU as problematic because of localism vs centralisation from Episode 1. Episode 2 highlights moral hazard.
  • JJ
    J J.
    28 February 2019 @ 01:45
    I loved this..but I wish 30% of it were edited out for sake of brevity. This whole series is unnecessarily long without being sufficiently information dense. Great guest and interview though!
  • PG
    Philippe G.
    13 February 2019 @ 01:04
    Indeed...tax collection and corruption are big issues. Also, can't forget the 'bamboccioni' phenomenon, basically the Italian version of jobless (and even employed) millennials still living at home. You could say that it's practically engraved in the culture....
    • FM
      Francesca M.
      27 February 2019 @ 03:02
      This is not a very fair perspective. The employment numbers among youth don't even reflect who's actually working full time (most are not), and even most full time jobs don't necessarily yield a living wage. People live at home for a long time because there is no money to live on their own. If you ask younger Italians what they wouldn't do to be able to strike out on their own, you'd be surprised at what you hear. There is also a lot of concern surrounding the sustainability of the current situation.
  • AW
    Albert W.
    16 February 2019 @ 03:37
    I absolutely love these episodes! Having boots on the ground talking about the geopolitical and economic issues makes for fascinating stories. Never had an interest to see Italy until now. Please make more shows like this!
  • JA
    John A.
    14 February 2019 @ 12:37
    Have you all at RV seen the various series on the BBC by Simon Reeves? The Tropic of Cancer, The Mediterranean, etc, they are brilliant. This strikes me as the finance version of the same thing. Finance, as with geopolitics are so much more interesting and entertaining when you are on the ground talking to people and wondering around in the madness. Well done. More please!
  • PW
    Pete W.
    13 February 2019 @ 23:12
    Love the carpool karaoke format....but
  • MB
    Matthias B.
    12 February 2019 @ 14:52
    I second Grant's idea about a blocking period before shareholders are allowed to vote, but in my view that does not really solve the structural issues underneath. Often, shareholders do not act on behalf of their constituency but sit rather in the same boat as the management with the goal to maximize returns in the short term. Another issue is the proxy vote which should be banned as well. Maybe a solution is that shareholders share a fiduciary duty that if the company does something bad with leads to economic loss or thereof, that shareholders carry part of that loss burden beyond the actual loss in the underlying shares. As the saying goes, one can only educate people by the wallet...
  • SS
    Sam S.
    11 February 2019 @ 15:43
    Mr. Diggle, let's not forget that American's pushed back against the King of England imposing taxes and regulations to the point of War. The American Revolution. Taxation without representation. Brussels is doing more than just economic pressure and most regulation is reactionary not proactive. The Immigration situation is horrible throughout Europe and other nations, selling politicians on this foolish idea of blending cultures. The mindset of one culture clashes with the mindset of another. Vast majority of the immigrants has been young males NOT women and children, all getting on board the free handout machine and their lawless invasion of many nations. Hitler was good at using children to sell is shite. This is why Merket is out as she was a major contributor to this destructive wave of immigration. Countries everywhere are pushing back which involves Brussels and lots of money. Middle East oil money/petrol dollars, has bought a lot of influence and bad debt. Italians should breakaway and be sovereign as the pain won't stop until they do. The confidence game in governments everywhere is falling fast. To my understanding, Italy has not had a stable government in 72 years, with 67 administrative changes. Immigration was never supposed to be a free handout paid by taxes imposed on citizens of each country. It's not discrimination.
    • JM
      John M.
      12 February 2019 @ 05:40
      Well said.
  • SH
    Stephen H.
    11 February 2019 @ 15:01
    Excellent testament to the unintended consequences of chasing quarterly returns in investments. Great thought leadership from Stephen.
  • DS
    David S.
    10 February 2019 @ 23:58
    Great interview. I watched all three several times. Thanks. But the follow quote needs bankruptcy added. "- because the only way you really ever truly dissolve debt is inflation or growth-". I know that you were not trying to be definitive, but the risk of bankruptcy benefits both the borrower and lender – from the individual to the sovereign. DLS
  • JH
    Joseph H.
    10 February 2019 @ 19:33
    Superb. Thank you RV team. Boxed in on 4-sides by Brussels, bureaucracy, demographics and regionalism, with no exit plan that doesn't result in major casualties. Zugzwang. When hard decisions have to be made no hard decisions will be made. The Iron Law of the modern western world, not just Italy.
  • DJ
    D J.
    10 February 2019 @ 15:39
    This format is really good National Geographics meets Finance - hopefully you will use it more.
  • FC
    Fractal C.
    10 February 2019 @ 15:04
    Fascinating stuff. I have always believed that we do NOT need a Dodd Frank regulation. Solving banking crisis worldwide requires one line legislation: No financial institution should be allowed to go public. That is it!
  • RD
    Rahul D.
    10 February 2019 @ 06:23
    Breathtaking views - literally and figuratively!
  • JN
    Jill N.
    10 February 2019 @ 05:04
    So much knowledge & History imparted by Steve , an excellent duo Grant & Steve 👌👏
  • OD
    Orin D.
    10 February 2019 @ 00:12
    Steve Diggle is a phenomenal guest
  • NI
    Nate I.
    9 February 2019 @ 22:01
    Another great interview Grant. Steve Diggle is such a smart guy. I could listen to him speak for days (literally) and hang on every word. I have no issue with what you and Steve discussed on share voting after a curing period, but I don't think it would help because the index funds and ETFs are where the problem lies (and they are long-term holders). The index and ETFs managers do not vote like owners. For the most part, they go along with whatever crap the corporate rent-a-manager puts on the ballot. If we are to make a change, I would like to see voting authority pass-through where fund holders vote their fractional portion of the shares. I realize that as a practical matter, a pass-through would be difficult because voting 500 proxies in the S&P or 5000 proxies in the Wilshire would be brutal, but I think it's the only way to clean-up the mess and transform shareholders back into owners.
  • WM
    Will M.
    9 February 2019 @ 14:51
    Superb background and basic failed Italian economic practices are incredible
  • RK
    Robert K.
    9 February 2019 @ 14:38
    Great video. But how can one discuss the MPS train wreck without talking about the incompetent and conflicted local politicians on the bloated board of the bank, and fancy accounting at their biggest client, Parmalat? And how about senior execs mysteriously falling out of windows? This has it all. Where is MPS - The Movie? (based on a true story, of course...)
  • BB
    Bojo B.
    9 February 2019 @ 14:36
    Once I was listening to a heart-breaking story of an Italian businessman who wasn't getting paid for his services by PUBLIC institutions, municipalities etc. He still had to be paying taxes on the money that was supposed to be getting, and after a decade of this, he finally went bankrupt, even though he otherwise had a great business. Supposedly there are hundreds of stories like this in Italy.
  • ra
    rehan a.
    9 February 2019 @ 13:40
  • ML
    Matthew L.
    8 February 2019 @ 21:21
    “I can sell you a dollar for 99c all day.”
    • MS
      Max S.
      9 February 2019 @ 08:09
      That part was fantastic
  • JH
    Jesse H.
    9 February 2019 @ 01:05
    Excellent stuff, gents. Many thanks.
  • LP
    Lynn P.
    8 February 2019 @ 19:53
    Looking for parking near Sienna. Never easy.
  • RM
    Ron M.
    8 February 2019 @ 17:12
    Grant, you've been looking for that gold. I found it in this series! Thank you :)
  • TJ
    Terry J.
    8 February 2019 @ 12:17
    Brilliant insight into what is ailing Italy and why it, like Japan seems doomed now to just zombify as an economy. Grant and Steve have some good ideas on how to fix the corporate and banking system. The corporate greed now encompassing global markets and economies could not be summed better than the example of how Goldman changed overnight with its IPO from a respected highly regarded banking operation with morals and principles to a vampire squid! Invaluable insights yet again from RV
  • SB
    S. B.
    8 February 2019 @ 11:50
    Shouldn't Italy get debt relief only in return for structural changes (results not promises)? Because It's not only about the bureaucracy in Italy, but also retirement age and pensions and black economy.