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Report: Italy to hold referendum Dec. 4

Italy will hold a referendum on Prime Minister MatteoRenzi's proposed constitutional reforms on Dec. 4, Bloomberg News reportedSept. 26.

The reforms would weaken the powers of the country's Senate amongother changes that Renzi says will lead to more efficient legislation and fewerpoliticians, Bloomberg noted. He also claims that the moves will put an end toa system that "has seen 63 different administrations since the end ofWorld War II."

Renzi had indicated that he would if he loses the vote, althoughhe has more recently declined to elaborate on that pledge in media interviews,the report added. Opponents of the reform claim that it would give governmentstoo much power and fail to produce material savings.

The vote is a potential stumbling block to plans torecapitalize ailing lender BancaMonte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, with the bank's planned equity raiseseen likely to bepostponed until early 2017.

A survey by the Ixe institute for RAI state television,published Sept. 26, showed 52.1% support for the changes, Bloomberg wrote.