The Wall Street Journal

For The Wall Street Journal in Milan, Italy. by FRANCESCA VOLPI
Gian Enrico Grugni’s dairy farm near Italy’s financial capital shows how the country’s big-spending budget, which the government says will spur growth, is so far hurting the companies it is supposed to help.⠀

Soon after Mr. Grugni applied for a €400,000 bank loan to buy land and build new cow stalls, Italy unveiled plans for a budget deficit that violated the European Union’s rules on fiscal discipline. Investors in turn demanded higher risk premiums for holding Italian bonds. And that led to bigger borrowing costs for Italian banks.⠀

The increase trickled down to Mr. Grugni, who said that while his application was pending the interest rate the bank will charge rose by almost half a percentage point, leaving him less money to invest in his business. Photos by @francesca_volpi_photo for @wsj.⠀