ECONOMY

Targets become unattainable

It seems that the budget deficit gets worse every time the figures are updated, and the latest data issued on Thursday by the General Accounting Office of the State appear to confirm this theory, showing the deficit at 23.1 billion euros in the year to October.

This means that the target for a budget deficit of 9 percent of the gross domestic product for the whole of the year is practically unattainable as it stood at 10.6 percent at the end of October. The situation did not improve in November, according to sources.

Inflation last month posted a small decline from October, going down from 3 percent to 2.9 percent, but with the average for the year to November at 3.4 percent, the target of reaching a 2.8 percent rate for the whole of the year also seems impossible.

Surprisingly, the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) yesterday announced a drop in the unemployment rate for September, as it came down to 17.5 percent from 18.4 percent in August.

In every previous year September had shown a rise in the jobless figure, but this year ELSTAT may have overestimated the August rate.