Bank chief: Italy may default

Italy cannot rule out the risk of default though it can weather the crisis if its economy returns to growth, the head of Italy's largest retail bank Intesa Sanpaolo was quoted as saying yesterday. "We should know the risk of default is there," Corrado Passera told Italian television channel La7, news agencies reported. "We shouldn't take it for granted that we can make it without courageous choices," he said, citing high public debt and low economic growth.