Italy in black. Report on the underground economy (2012)

The Report on the underground economy produced by Eurispes and the San Pio V Institute in Rome analyses the Italian economic context in the light of the most recent data on tax evasion, illegal work, the action of the Inland Revenue, the balance of families facing the “third-week syndrome”, the consumption of luxury goods and the phenomenon of the “false poor”, and legislative measures aimed at re-emerging the underground economy and combating evasion. The picture drawn by the Report presents the portrait of an economy forced to heavily rely on the underground economy to tackle the crisis, and in which evasion appears, in many cases, almost an option for survival.
The imbalance between income and expenditure reveals the presence of ‘undeclared’ family wealth, without which even normal administrative expenditure would be almost unsustainable in the medium/long term. It was therefore decided, by means of the investigations presented in this Report, to further explore the issue of the differential between “declared” wealth and “real well-being” in our Country, adopting an empirical approach and formulating an analytical model based on: the collection and systematisation of 13 regional and provincial socio-economic context variables, the indexing of the individual variables under investigation, the calculation of the differential between the proxy indicators of “declared” wealth (per capita GDP and household disposable income) and the average of the proxy indicators of well-being. Negative values of the differential correspond to a real wealth that is higher than the declared wealth and, therefore, to a more or less high level of the shadow economy.


A co-conspirator society
by Antonio Iodice, President of the San PioV Institute for Political Studies, and Gian Maria Fara, President of Eurispes

The underground economy: a must for survival
A complex phenomenon

The economic scenario
The Italian context
The black economy through official statistics
– Tax evasion
– The action of the Agenzia delle Entrate
– The tax shield
– Non-regular work
Some first conclusions

Income declared by Italians
41.5 million taxpayers-physical persons
49.1% of taxpayers below the €15,000 income threshold

Expenditure actually incurred
A €940 billion a year bill

The family budget
Balancing acts
– The family budget: expenditure
– Income does not cover expenditure
– Yet we live

A mapping of the black economy drawn by Eurispes
Towards re-emergence

Luxury consumption
The usefulness of the useless
The universe of luxury and the kingdom of the rich
Luxury goods market trends
Economic crisis, luxury goods and social inequality
Submerged and luxury: how to find the evaders

The spread between declared and real income


Does the shadow economy save Italy? The shadow economy as a shock absorber of the crisis

Please log in as a registered user to get access to the full version of the documents

Existing Users Log In
Social Network