Greece: deficit-cutting is exceeding targets

June 10, 2010 12:48:25 PM PDT
ATHENS, Greece (AP) - Greece says it has exceeded budget deficit-cutting targets in the first five months of the year, as a lower than expected increase in revenues was offset by higher spending cuts.A finance ministry statement says the January-May deficit was euro8.97 billion ($10.77 billion), compared to euro14.65 billion in the first five months of 2009. It says this represents a 38.8 percent reduction, more than the planned 35.1 percent cut.

Also Thursday, Greece's statistical authority said unemployment in March reached 11.6 percent. Although a five-year high for the month of March, the figure was down from 12.1 percent in February, with 26,500 fewer jobless people.

Debt-ridden Greece narrowly avoided defaulting on its loans last month, using part of a euro110 billion international rescue package.