Official figures are scheduled to be published on Tuesday, 4pm GMT, and accordingly the finance ministry refused to comment the story. A surplus of HUF48bn (5.0% of GDP) would result in a full-year deficit of HU1291bn, well below the initially budgeted HUF1668bn (6.4% of GDP). But even if the report is inaccurate, Hungary's finance minister could boast, for once at least, good fiscal performance.
According to official estimates, the deficit will amount to 5.2% of GDP, also visibly better than the target. With no major tax changes planned for 2008 fiscal policy should enter a calmer phase. That said, deficit reduction will continue, as the government's convergence plan aims at a budget deficit of 4.0% of GDP in 2008. Therefore, fiscal policy has hardly any room to provide a meaningful impetus to economic activity in our opinion.