The Italian financial markets will be attacked this month. Giancarlo Georgetta, undersecretary in the prime minister’s office and a leading light in the far-right League party, said “I expect an attack [in August]”.

“The markets are populated by hungry speculative funds that choose their prey and pounce,” Giorgetti told Libero. “In the summer the market volumes are small, you can lay the groundwork for aggressive initiatives against countries. Look at Turkey.”

Turkish markets slumped last week on growing concerns over the country’s economy and political leadership.

“If the (market) storm comes, we will open our umbrella. Italy is a big country and has the resources to react, thanks in part to its large amount of private savings,” said Giorgetti, who is seen as a moderating force within the League.

As reported by the Reuters news agency, Italian media on August 12 was quoting a report by bankers’ federation that showed household savings in Italy totalled some 4.4 trillion euros against 2.2 trillion in 1998.

In a separate report, Bloomberg quoted Italian Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio saying his country won’t be subject to an attack by speculators.

“I don’t see a real risk that this government will be attacked, it’s more a wish of the opposition,” Di Maio said in an interview with Corriere della Sera published on August 13.

“If someone wants to use the markets against this government, they should know we are not blackmail-able,” Di Maio said in his interview. “This is not the summer of 2011 and Berlusconi isn’t at Palazzo Chigi,” referring to the office of the prime minister.