Italians are voting in one of the closest-watched parliamentary elections in years.
Analysts say markets are nervous about whether it will produce a strong government to pull Italy out of recession and help resolve the eurozone debt crisis.
Opinion polls put center-left leader Pier Luigi in front, but analysts aren't sure he will be able to form a stable majority to push through the economic reforms Italy needs.
Also expected to poll strongly is Silvio Berlusconi, the four-time prime minister who has promised tax refunds and staged a media blitz in an attempt to win back voters in recent weeks.
Voting will take place on February 24 and 25, with first results expected early on February 26.
Based on reporting by Reuters and AP