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Italy Debates Debt Plan, U.S. Customers Change Banks

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with markets focusing on Italy.

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MONTAGNE: European stock markets started their trading day lower, as investors fret over the European debt crisis. Greek political leaders are forming a new coalition government. The new coalition is expected to approve a new EU bailout plan. But even as Greece tries to get its act together, Italy is looking more fragile. Today, Italian lawmakers debate an austerity plan. The vote is also a test of Italy's leadership, and whether it is stable enough to deal with its troubled government finances.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Here in the United States, major banks have backed off plans to impose new debit card fees, but over the weekend, thousands of people still shifted their money from big name banks to smaller institutions. They were responding to Bank Transfer Day, a nationwide campaign touted on Facebook and in the Occupy Wall Street protests. According to the Credit Union National Association, more than 650,000 accounts have been opened at credit unions since Bank of America first announced its plans for a debit card fee in late September. After much criticism, B of A dropped that idea last week. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.