Greek January-July central government budget surplus tops target as spending held back


Greece's central government recorded a primary budget surplus of 3.53 billion euros ($3.93 billion) in the first seven months of the year, beating a target due to a sharp fall in spending, finance ministry data showed on Thursday.

The central government surplus excludes the budgets of social security organisations and local administrations and is different from the figure monitored by Greece's EU/IMF lenders but indicates the state of the cash-strapped country's finances.

The government had targeted a primary budget surplus of 2.98 billion euros for the seven-month period, data showed.

Tax revenues came in at 26.7 billion euros, below a target of 30.8 billion euros. Public spending stood at 27.7 billion euros, 4.4 billion euros below target as the cash-strapped country cut back on expenditure to meet its obligations.