Keywords: Municipal Capitalism, Economic Activity, Operating and Financial Performance
A recent debate in Italy has stressed the relevance of the so called «municipal capitalism», i.e. of the increasing presence of firms created and owned by local governments in various sectors. These firms are suspected of being ways on the one hand to by-pass constraints set by public finance laws on the municipalities' borrowing ability, and on the other hand to distort competition in sectors where local authorities are in charge of public regulation. The aim of this article (and more in depth of our book "Comuni S.p.A. Il Capitalismo Municipale in Italia") is to identify direct and indirect holdings by local governments and to give evidence of their impact on economic activity (so far, purely descriptive and preliminary), and on their operating and financial performance.