Italian pressure groups failed to muster up sufficient support for a boycott of pubs, cafes, restaurants and discotheques despite widespread abhorrence at price hikes.

The switch to the euro from the lire is largely responsible for triggered by price rises. Such is the love of culinary indulgence by Italians that the prospect of abstinence is abhorrent.

The four groups involved claim at least 40% of the public joined the boycott in dozens of cities across the country. Proprietors reported business had carried o much as usual.

Financial Times 12/10/02 page 8