ECONOMY

In Brief

Greece’s per capita income puts it in 15th place among EU’s 25 Greece’s per capita income equals 79 percent of the EU average in the new European Union of 25 members, Eurostat revealed yesterday. Of the newcomers, only Cyprus, whose per capita GDP stands at 83 percent of the EU average, is ahead. Right after Greece come Slovenia (77 percent) and Portugal (75 percent), the only one of the old EU members whose per capita GDP is lower than Greece’s. Heading the list of EU member states are Luxembourg (208 percent), Ireland (131 percent) and Denmark (123 percent). Ireland’s position does not reflect its real income, however, since a considerable part of its GDP involves earnings of foreign companies operating in the country, which are repatriated. At the bottom of the pile is Latvia (42 percent), which is still richer than aspiring members Romania (30 percent), Bulgaria (29 percent) and Turkey (27 percent). Cyprus inflation jumps in April because of fuel price rises NICOSIA (Reuters) – Cyprus’s headline inflation was running at 1.49 percent year-on-year in May compared to 0.48 percent in April, stoked by fuel price increases, the country’s statistics service announced yesterday. Headline inflation, tracked by the consumer price index, increased by 0.61 percent to 117.77 points on a monthly basis in May. There was an increase in the price of fuel products, cigarettes and clothing and footwear. Authorities deregulated the price of fuel in the last week of May. It also introduced value-added tax on children’s clothing as part of reforms to join the European Union on May 1. New target price Morgan Stanley announced yesterday it had cut its rating on electricity utility Public Power Corporation to «equal-weight» from «overweight» and trimmed its price target on the stock to 22 euros from 24 euros previously. The investment bank said low visibility on tariffs, higher oil prices and regulatory risks had also led it to reduce its earnings-per-share estimates for the company to 1.38 euros from 1.76 euros for 2004, and to 1.84 euros from 2.36 euros for 2005. (Reuters) Transfer fees Greek mobile telephony subscribers who wish to transfer to another provider while retaining their mobile phone number are obliged to pay an exorbitant fee compared to other Europeans. Most providers charge users 30 euros for the facility, except for Q-Telecom, which charges 19 euros. In other European countries, the same service is provided either free of charge, or with a minimal charge (up to 6 euros). Bond issue Alpha Bank has completed a 400-million-euro, three-year bond issue, a senior manager said yesterday. The bond issue, with interest set at three-month Euribor plus 25 basis points, will not be included in the bank’s regulatory capital, the manager said, adding that it was taken up for the most part by international investors. (Reuters)