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Hungary’s budget gap beats forecasts

The Hungarian public sector deficit reported by the Finance Ministry amounted to Ft 142.4 billion, lower than the prognosis of Ft 172.2 billion.

Hungary's public deficit amounted to Ft 142.4 billion in November, against the Finance Ministry's forecast for a gap of Ft 172.2 billion (on a cash flow basis, excluding local governments), the ministry has announced on Thursday. In October, Hungary posted a budget gap of Ft 49.8 billion versus the official forecast for Ft 31.9 billion.

Hungary is currently working to cut its budget deficit after accumulating the European Union's largest shortfall in 2006. The general view of analysts is that the planned 6.2% of GDP target (ESA-95) is likely to be undershot. The January-November deficit amounted to Ft 1,339.4 billion, which corresponds to 90.5% of the full-year target and 5.2% of this year's estimated GDP. The ministry's prognosis for the January-November gap was Ft 1,369.1 billion. All sub-systems closed November in the red, which, the ministry said, was attributable to the fact that the second installment of the 13th month pension was paid this month and pension correction was also effectuated in November.

According to preliminary data, the central state budget posted a deficit of Ft 12.1 billion in November, boosting the year-to-date gap to Ft 1,404.7 billion (vs. Ft 1,432.1 billion forecast).

Central government revenues in the first 11 months totaled Ft 6,056 billion, more than the expected Ft 6,051.3 billion. Expenditure was Ft 7,460.7 billion, less than the projected Ft 7,483.4 billion.

Social security funds had a deficit of Ft 123.2 billion in November, taking the accumulated 11-month balance to Ft  24.5 billion, less than the projected Ft 28.8 billion.

Revenues totaled Ft 3,891.4 billion, in line with the expectation for Ft 3,895 billion, and expenditure was Ft 3,915.9 billion, less than the forecasted Ft 3,923.8 billion.

Extra-budgetary funds posted a Ft 7.1 billion deficit in Nov, which brought the January-October balance to Ft 89.8 billion plus, while the ministry expected Ft 91.8 billion plus for the first ten months.

Revenues in the period under review totaled Ft 418 billion (vs. Ft 416.7 billion forecast) and expenditure came in somewhat higher than expected at Ft 328.2 billion (vs. Ft 324.9 billion forecast). (Gazdasági Rádió)