Slight improvement of Greece’s general government balance in September – Strong performance in 9M’12

Latest MoF data show that general government deficit, according to cash data, eased by 48.3% y-o-y to €9,689m in 9M’12 from €18,744m last year, with primary balance recording a surplus of €1,249m from deficit of €4,146m in 9M’11.

Current period data incorporate:

  • A drop of state budget deficit by 42.9% y-o-y to €11,647m with primary deficit shrinking 84.3% to €997m from €6,361m in 9M’11.
  • Extrabudgetary funds’ (i.e. legal entities) surplus of €917m from €1,074m last year.
  • Local governments’ surplus of €360m down from last year’s €963m.
  • Social security funds’ surplus of €680m from deficit of €388m in 9M’11.

Released data imply a slight further improvement of general government balance, which recorded a surplus of €200m in September from €720m in August and deficit of €729m in July and €1,697m in June. Furthermore, primary balance recorded a deficit of €191m in September after an exceptionally strong performance in August, when primary surplus stood at €1,669m. September bottom-line (€200m) primarily reflects a positive contribution from extrabudgetary funds (€304m) and -to a lesser extent- local governments’ and social securities’ surpluses of €47m and €38m respectively, more than offsetting state budget deficit of €189m.

Furthermore, general government arrears (> 90 days) rose 2.7% m-o-m to €8,294m at the end of September from (revised) €8,075m in August. Note that August initial figure stood at €7.9bn. The bulk of general government arrears stems from social security funds (€4.5bn – 54% of total) and hospitals (€1.8bn – 21%), while state budget arrears stand at €0.93bn (11%) and local authorities at €0.76bn (9%).

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