Marco Crosetto, Partner at Deloitte Luxembourg and the Italian Business Community Leader at Deloitte; Credit: Deloitte Luxembourg

Around 90 representatives of Luxembourg’s Italian business community gathered last week at Deloitte’s annual forum to discuss the growing importance of the Italian market.

The increasing importance of Italy in the asset management industry was the focus of the ninth edition of Deloitte’s annual forum for the Italian business community in Luxembourg, organised on 28 November 2017 in collaboration with the Italian Chamber of Commerce and the Bocconi Alumni Association. The conference gathered around 90 representatives from the local Italian-speaking business community to an Italian-themed evening at Mudam.

At the event, keynote speaker Andrea Goldstein, chief economist at Nomisma, pointed out that some signs of economic recovery are finally noticeable in Italy and consumers’ trust is rising.  He added that whilst several good reforms have been implemented, some are still missing to ensure that the economic situation in Italy does not suffer from structural uncertainties.

Meanwhile, Andrea Pennacchia, Managing Director of IWBank Private Investments, highlighted the relationship between investment advisers and investors, and the crucial role this interaction plays when it comes to identifying the real needs of the investors. The social changes and the increase in life expectancy should lead investors to plan their investments accordingly.

Another major change affecting the investor’s behaviour and expectations, was cited as the rise of new technology, platforms and tools as natural parts of the investment journey. Andrea Pennacchia, however, reminded the audience that as in other sectors, the real value of technology is to complement and not replace human interaction.

Like Luxembourg, the financial sector in Italy goes far beyond the country’s borders. According to data presented by the global market intelligence company Broadridge SalesWatch, cross-border assets in Italy grew by 370 percent between 2007 and 2017, and Italy is set to be the top market globally for European-domiciled cross-border fund sales in 2017. The cross-border perspective is common for Italy and Luxembourg, while the two countries differ in other domains.

Marco Crosetto, Partner at Deloitte Luxembourg and the Italian Business Community Leader at Deloitte, summarised: "Italy and Luxembourg have a lot in common, but also a lot to learn from each other. The two countries are undergoing similar challenges linked to increased regulation, new technology and changing investor expectations.”