|General Government Finances|
|Surplus/Deficit||Gross Debt||Net Debt|
|% quarterly||% annualised||% annualised|
The government recorded a deficit of €2.8 billion (-1.2% of GDP) for the first nine months of 2018. This compares with a deficit of €3.1 billion (-1.5% of GDP) for the same period last year (Table 1).
In the first nine months of 2018, government revenue increased by €2.5 billion (+4.6%) compared with the same period of 2017. The main driving factor was a 5.7% increase in Taxes and social contributions (Tables 1 and 3).
Expenditure levels of government increased by €2.2 billion (+3.8%) when comparing the first nine months of 2018 and 2017. Increases in Compensation of employees/pay (+6.0%) and Use of goods and services (+7.9%) were partially offset by a decrease in Interest (-9.8%) (Tables 1 and 4).
Government Gross Debt at 68.8% of GDP at end Q3 2018
General Government Gross Debt (GG Debt) stood at €216.2 billion (68.8% of annualised GDP) at the end of September 2018, compared with a debt level of €211.0 billion (72.9%) at end Q3 2017. The fall in the ratio was due to an increase in GDP over the year (Table 2).
At the end of September 2018, General Government Net Debt was €178.1 billion (56.7% of annualised GDP) compared with €174.3 billion (60.2%) at end Q3 2017. Net debt increased primarily due to an increase in debt issuance in the year.
National accounts are compiled in the EU according to the European System of National Accounts framework - ESA 2010.
Data for Q1 and Q2 2018 have only been revised due to increased data availability. Pre-2018 data remains unchanged to that published in the 2018 Q2 publication on 19 October 2018.
Pre-2018 Government Finance Statistics (GFS) are benchmarked to the most recent EDP notification as published on 19 October 2018. Consequently, they may not always be fully aligned with the National Income and Expenditure and related publications such as the Institutional Sector Accounts and the Quarterly National Accounts.
The calculation methods for quarterly GFS are similar to those used in deriving the annual GFS. As some of the available sources are of lesser reliability than those used for the annual GFS, the quarterly estimates are subject to a greater margin of error than the annual figures.
A full description of the concepts and definitions used in the production of these figures is provided in the Background notes.