April 9, 2013 / 10:03 AM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 1-Greek inflation turns negative, first time in 45 years

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    ATHENS, April 9 (Reuters) - Greek consumer prices entered
deflationary territory for the first time in 45 years as the
country's deep recession pushes down prices, data showed on
Tuesday.
    Consumer prices fell 0.2 percent year-on-year in March, the
first month of deflation since 1968, Greece's statistics service
said, with EU-harmonised inflation also falling to -0.2 percent.
    Greece's economy is in its sixth year of recession, hurt by
austerity policies imposed under a bailout from the European
Union and International Monetary Fund which is keeping the
country afloat.
    "The deflation process is expected to continue for the
remainder of this year, providing some support to overly
depressed disposable incomes," said Platon Monokroussos, an
economist at Eurobank.
    "Overall this is in line with the existing bailout programme
and likely to somewhat alleviate troika worries that prevailing
rigidities in the domestic economy hinder an adjustment in
domestic prices."
    Data on Tuesday also showed industrial output fell 3.9
percent year-on-year in February after dropping 4.2 percent in
the previous month, underscoring the grim state of the Greek
economy.   
    
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    KEY FIGURES        MARCH   FEB   JAN   DEC  
    CPI y/y            -0.2   +0.1  +0.2  +0.8 
    EU-harmonised      -0.2   +0.1  +0.0  +0.3
    ------------------------------------------
    source: ELSTAT

 (Reporting by George Georgiopoulos; Editing by Catherine Evans)

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