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Financial Outlook

The Greek economy will emerge from six years of recession in 2014 and record a primary budget surplus of 1.6% of GDP in the process, the government announced in January 2014. Falling spreads (the difference between the yield on Greek debt and the benchmark German government bond) on Greek government bonds also encouraged ministers to say that Greece would hold its first bond issue since 2010 in the second half of the year. The yield on 10-year bonds ended 2013 at 8.42%, down from nearly 13% in late March. Shares on the Athens stock exchange also rose an impressive 28% in the year. At the end of 2013 Prime Minister Antonis Samaras added that Greece would exit its bailout agreement in 2014 and would not need any further loans. However, unemployment reached 27% in the third quarter of 2013, the highest level among the 34 advanced economies in the OECD. In December 2013 parliament passed the 2014 budget, which is predicated on a return to growth. Moreover, the government’s forecast of a return to growth was at odds with the predictions of the OECD, which forecast a 0.4% contraction in the Greek economy in 2014.

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Further reading on Greece


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