ECONOMY

In Brief

October CPI inflation seen up at 14-month high Greece’s consumer price inflation is seen as accelerating further to a 14-month high in October as higher oil prices bite, economists said yesterday. Four economists surveyed by Reuters expect October inflation to pick up to 3.1 percent on average, the highest reading since August last year when it hit 3.5 percent. «The 12 percent surge in heating oil prices in October drove headline inflation to a 14-month high of 3.2 percent, despite favorable developments in fresh fruits and vegetables,» predicted National Bank of Greece economist Nick Magginas. Economists said Greek inflation will probably pick up further in the last two months of the year on higher energy costs, bringing the average rate in 2007 to 2.8 percent versus 3.2 percent last year. (Reuters) Gov’t bond trade volume has risen since September The volume of Greek government debt traded on the central bank’s electronic system (HDAT) rose to 40.75 billion euros in October from 34.35 billion in September, the Bank of Greece said yesterday. Government bond yields fell in October, in line with the rest of the eurozone, with the biggest decline by 12 basis points seen in 10-year and 15-year benchmark bonds where yields dropped to 4.53 and 4.77 percent respectively. The yield curve flattened in October while shifting lower, as the yield difference between 30- and 3-year bonds narrowed to 67 from 73 basis points. The average monthly yield spread between Greek and German 10-year benchmark bonds shrank to 28 from 32 basis points in September. (Reuters) Bulgaria building boom The supply of holiday homes in Bulgaria rose by 43 percent in the first half of 2007, outpacing demand and keeping a lid on prices, research from property services firm Colliers International showed yesterday. «International buyers, predominantly British and Irish, continue to account for most of the demand,» Atanas Garov, managing director of Colliers Bulgaria, said. Colliers said Bulgarian property prices remained within last year’s range of 800 to 1,700 euros per square meter and would continue to do so for the «near future.» (Reuters) Alapis Lavrentis Lavrentiadis, chairman of Alapis Holdings Industrial and Commercial, has sold a 127.5-million-euro ($184.5 million) stake in the Greek maker of veterinary drugs and agriculture products and may reduce his holding even more. He sold 52.7 million shares, representing about a 5 percent stake, for 2.42 euros each to institutional buyers in a private placement managed by Deutsche Bank AG and Sal Oppenheim, Alapis said in a bourse filing. The drugmaker didn’t say when the stake was sold or identify the buyers. (Bloomberg) BoG share bonus The Bank of Greece plans to offer shareholders one bonus share for every four held after a re-evaluation of its property, Governor Nikos Garganas said yesterday. The government is the Bank of Greece’s biggest shareholder. (Bloomberg)