Greek economic rebound boosted by tourism in third quarter

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ATHENS, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Greece's economic rebound from the pandemic was helped by a strong performance in tourism in the third quarter, with the country's annual growth rate remaining in double digits as consumer spending and investment stayed robust.

Seasonally adjusted data showed gross domestic product grew 2.7% from a downwardly revised 2.1% growth rate in the second quarter and at an annual 13.4% clip after an upwardly revised 16.6% pace in the previous quarter.

"The economy's growth momentum picked up in the third quarter compared to the previous one with a boost from tourism which performed better than expected," said National Bank senior economist Nikos Magginas.

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Based on the latest readings, the economy was headed for full-year growth of more than 8.0%, he said.

"Growth is bound to exceed 8.0% in the full year, even assuming a significant slowdown in the fourth quarter," he said.

Shortly after the release of the data, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said that GDP growth for the nine months to September topped 9.3%, which makes this year's target "absolutely feasible".

Greece has projected that GDP will grow 6.9% this year after a 9.0% pandemic-induced economic contraction last year.

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitstotakis told Reuters last week the economy was poised to grow by more than 7% this year as it has already made up all the ground lost to the pandemic. read more

Investment in July-to-September maintained the momentum seen in the second quarter and consumer spending remained strong despite a slowdown, economist Magginas said.

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KEY FIGURES Q3 Q2 Q1 Q4 Q3

GDP (q/q, %) 2.7 2.1* 4.2* 3.9* 5.6*

GDP (y/y,%) 13.4 16.6* -1.9*-7.3* -11.0*

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revised

source: ELSTAT

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Reporting by George Georgiopoulos and Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Nick Macfie

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