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Debt Sale in Italy Steadies Markets

(New York Times)— Stocks steadied Thursday in Europe and were poised for a lift at the opening bell on Wall Street, after Italy managed a successful offering of debt securities.

PARIS — Stocks steadied Thursday in Europe and were poised for a lift at the opening bell on Wall Street, after Italy, the latest euro zone domino to begin wobbling, managed a successful offering of debt securities, though at a sharply higher rate than the last time it went to market.

In morning trading, the Euro Stoxx 50 index, a barometer of euro zone blue chip shares, rose 0.5 percent, while the FTSE 100 index in London fell about 0.5 percent.

Standard & Poor's 500 index futures gained 0.8 percent, suggesting that Wall Street stocks would rise at the opening bell. On Wednesday, the S.& P. 500 index fell 3.7 percent as the reverberations from the euro crisis grew.

Italy raised €5 billion, or $6.8 billion, in an auction Thursday of one-year securities. The Italian Treasury sold the full allotment of bonds on offer, but it paid an average rate of 6.09 percent to do so, far above the 3.57 percent it paid for a similar offering on Oct. 3. It also marked the most Italy has had paid for such debt since September 1997, when the country still used the lira.

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Society

Parenthood And The Pressure Of Always Having To Be Doing Better

As a father myself, I'm now better able to understand the pressures my own dad faced. It's helped me face my own internal demands to constantly be more productive and do better.

Photo of a father with a son on his shoulders

Father and son in the streets of Madrid, Spain

Ignacio Pereyra*

-Essay-

When I was a child — I must have been around eight or so — whenever we headed with my mom and grandma to my aunt's country house in Don Torcuato, outside of Buenos Aires, there was the joy of summer plans. Spending the day outdoors, playing soccer in the field, being in the swimming pool and eating delicious food.

But when I focus on the moment, something like a painful thorn appears in the background: from the back window of the car I see my dad standing on the sidewalk waving us goodbye. Sometimes he would stay at home. “I have to work” was the line he used.

Maybe one of my older siblings would also stay behind with him, but I'm sure there were no children left around because we were all enthusiastic about going to my aunt’s. For a long time in his life, for my old man, those summer days must have been the closest he came to being alone, in silence (which he liked so much) and in calm, considering that he was the father of seven. But I can only see this and say it out loud today.

Over the years, the scene repeated itself: the destination changed — it could be a birthday or a family reunion. The thorn was no longer invisible but began to be uncomfortable as, being older, my interpretation of the events changed. When words were absent, I started to guess what might be happening — and we know how random guessing can be.

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