Italian Stocks’ Worst-Ever Start to Year Ends With Bang: Chart

For Italian stock investors, the beginning and end of 2016 couldn’t look more different. After kicking off the year with the biggest January slump on record, the FTSE MIB Index is heading for its best December since 1999. The country’s equity benchmark is set for a monthly gain of 13 percent as lenders rally on optimism that state aid will help resolve their bad-loans issue, notwithstanding Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA’s probable rescue.