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U.S. President Donald Trump's debt offer to Italy

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By Mark Armstrong
U.S. President Donald Trump's debt offer to Italy
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Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera is reporting that U.S. President Donald Trump told the Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte in a recent meeting in Washington that the United States was ready to offer Italy help in funding its public debt next year.

The report said the U.S. would do it by buying Italian government bonds but other than that there was little further detail.

Italian bond yields rose on Friday after a brief move lower in early trading following the article.

The country's government debt stands at more than 130 percent of its gross domestic product, a level that one U.S. media channel says has sent investors fleeing. Trump has a warm relationship with the Italian government, rare right now in his dealings with Europe. One financial analyst told the newspaper that the U.S. president's goal is to foment division between Italy and the rest of the EU because he supports the country leaving the Euro.

Giuseppe Conte's office could not immediately be reached for comment.