In this surreal scenario in which the coronavirus has now forced us to live for weeks, figuring what it will really cost to everyone is still very difficult. Research centers have made a lot of forecasts (the latest is from Cerved which calculates a drop in turnover for Italian companies of as much as 650 billion euros, see here a previous article by BeBeez), but all are based on hypotheses which nobody can tell are going to be real. So how interesting is still Italy for international investors now?
Apart from the fears of stock market raids, given the current bargain prices and therefore the government’s desire to strengthen the golden power (see here another article by BeBeez), Italian companies might face a lack of capital for financing their survival at first and their relauch as a second step. If Italy is considered at risk, investors will prefer to seize the opportunities of the relaunch in other countries in Europe, rather than in Italy. And that’s a real problem. For this reason BeBeez launched the Invest in Italy Index, a weekly index to monitor the sentiment of international investors towards Italy.
We did it without conducting surveys, but relying on artificial intelligence. We asked Skillroom, a spin-off startup of the University of Turin to help us monitor all the news and posts in English on the web and social networks that somehow included the concepts of investing in Italy; invest in equity and bonds of listed Italian companies; invest in unlisted Italian companies; invest in real estate in Italy.
The first analysis went back four weeks until February 17 to have a comparison parameter. In the period considered, mentions on the web and social networks regarding the keyword “invest in Italy” and related companies were over 1,500 and had 32.2 million readers. Of these mentions, about 66% have been identified on the web and the rest on social media (download the full report here).
In the last week, the one from 16 to 22 March, the negative sentiment has increased by about 25% (248 mentions) while the positive one by about 36% (271 mentions), thus maintaining a stable condition with a slight advantage of news with positive sentiment, but this does not mean that in the last week the growth of the negative has been very strong, particularly identified on March 18, the day when the BTP-Bund spread had reached 330 basis points, so as to push the The ECB then announced the new 750 billion euro quantitative easing overnight (see here another article by BeBeez).
Skillroom is a startup born in 2017 from a research project of the University of Turin. The research project focuses on machine learning out of the big data and NLP (natural language processing) of minority and / or unwritten languages. The research project has entered its fifth year and is a PRIN (Project of Relevant National Interest) for MIUR. To date it has been funded with more than 700 thousand euros. The result of this research was patented (industrial patent) and the University of Turin has granted Skillroom exclusive use. The startup has developed several web marketing, analytics and sentiment analysis tools. For a test analysis, click here or click here for information.