Greece revises 2012 deficit up to 6.2 percent

Greece says 2012 budget deficit a bit higher than first calculated, but still within targets

Associated Press

ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- Greece's statistical authority says last year's budget deficit was slightly higher than initially calculated, citing revisions to the cost of supporting the country's banks.

The 2012 deficit is now estimated at 6.2 percent of annual output, from the initially reported 6 percent, the authority said Friday. That's still better than the initial target of 6.6 percent.

The conservative-led government says it will reduce the deficit this year to 2.4 percent of GDP, where it is forecast to settle next year, too.

Greece has been engaged in a brutal austerity drive since it nearly went bankrupt in 2010 after drastically revising up its deficit — to 15.8 percent from an initial estimate of below 4 percent. For more than three years, the country has been kept afloat by international bailouts.

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