ECONOMY

In Brief

Fewer workers to pay for more pensions Greece’s working population is 4.9 percent lower at 3,838,600 compared to 10 years ago, creating increasing concern over the viability of the country’s social security system as fewer working people are to be depended upon to pay for an increasing number of pensions. During this period, the number of pensioners advanced 25.7 percent to 2,154,940, bringing the ratio to 100 pensioners for every 179 working people (1.79), when the viability equilibrium is estimated at 3.5. The two largest pension funds, for self-employed artisans, TEBE, and for salary earners, IKA, have ratios of 3.34 and 2.25 respectively. The funds faring worst are those of public enterprises and banks. The National Bank fund has a ratio of 1.40, OTE Telecom 1.24, and the Public Power Corporation 1.13, while the Agricultural Bank fund receives contributions from fewer people than it pays pensions to (0.81). Two of the best-faring funds are those of Athens and Thessaloniki journalists (8.76) and of engineers (6.91). The lawyers’ fund has a ratio of 3.09. Budget revenues above target in first three quarters Public revenues rose by 8.2 percent in the first three quarters, against a 6.1-percent target, in relation to the same period last year. VAT revenues advanced 11 percent, income tax was right on target and other revenues rose 13.3, while taxes on stock market transactions were down 46.5 percent. The Finance Ministry continues not to apply the Eurostat guideline for the deduction of revenues from the circulation of coins, in which case the overall rise would have been 6.5 percent. NYSE debut Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company made its trade debut on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Thursday with its first ADSs changing hands at $14.85. The world’s second-largest bottler of Coca-Cola products, CCHBC is also listed on the Athens, London and Sydney exchanges. On the NYSE, one ADS equals one share of CCHBC. Earlier, the shares closed 2.3 percent higher at 15.10 euros in Athens, outperforming the benchmark index. (Reuters) Intrasoft Intrasoft International has won a one-year, 4.75-million-euro contract to set up the Electronic Proposal Submission System (EPSS) for the Sixth Framework Program of the European Commission. EPSS will replace the submission of proposals by post. The contract has an option for renewal for three more annual periods. Banking conference The Economist magazine is organizing a conference on «Private banking and capital management» in Athens on October 22 and 23. Bank of Greece Governor Nikolaos Garganas and Hellenic Union of Banks Chairman Theodoros Karadzas are expected to be among the participants. Labor General Confederation of Greek Workers (GSEE) Chairman Christos Polyzogopoulos has been elected deputy chairman of the European Confederation of Trade Unions. Fine The Capital Market Commission has imposed a 20,000-euro fine on ETBA P&K Mutual Funds company for having exceeded the 1-percent limit on investment of its assets in derivatives.