Blogs and advice from Industry leading Specialists
Valuable Opinions, Comments & Gossip
Financial related News & Articles relating to Spain
Latest News, Stories
& Hot Topics
Various Tools & Widgets to help with your financial needs
Tools & Widgets to
help with finances
Polls, Surveys and Opinions featured throughout Tumbit
Featured Polls, Surveys & Stats
Discussions, Advice & Topical Chat
Discussions, Advice & Topical Chat

Increase in IVA causes Inflation to surge to 3.5%

Source: El Pais - Sat 29th Sep 2012
Increase in IVA causes Inflation to surge to 3.5%

The increase in the rate of IVA implemented at the begining of September has caused a surge in the rate of inflation to 3.5%, raising the question of whether retirees will be compensated for the loss of purchasing power in their state pensions and the impact this will have on the government's deficit-reduction plans.

According to a preliminary estimate released yesterday by the National Statistics Institute (INE), the consumer price index jumped from 2.7% in August to 3.5% in September, the highest level since May of last year. "This was mainly the result of an increase in prices in most of the sectors," the INE said. The institute is due to publish a breakdown of the figures on October 11.

The government raised the standard rate of IVA from 18% to 21% and the reduced rate to 10% from 8%. It also moved items that carried the reduced rate to the standard rate.

The government is obliged to compensate pensioners for any increase in inflation above the official target level, which was 1% for this year. The government normally analyzes the situation based on the level of inflation in November. Analysts expect the impact of the IVA hike to continue to filter through in the next few months. A number of companies have said they will not pass the hike on to their customers.

At the current level of inflation, the Social Security system would have to fork out €2.5 billion to boost pensions this year, with another payment of the same amount at the start of next year.

In the 2013 draft state budget, the government said it would raise state pensions by 1% and also compensate them for any rise in inflation above that amount. In order to do so, it will withdraw over three billion euros from the Social Security's pension reserve fund, which currently has assets of €67 billion.

At a presentation of the budget yesterday, Finance Minister Cristóbal Montoro sidestepped questions on whether the government plans to abolish the law that guarantees compensation for pensioners if inflation comes in above target.

Montoro said it was important for the economy to maintain pensioners' spending power. "We are guaranteeing the incomes of almost 10 million people who receive those pensions," he said.

The finance minister on Thursday underscored the government's commitment to meeting its deficit reduction targets, which include trimming the shortfall in its finances from 8.9% last year to 6.3% for 2012 and 4.5%in 2013.

A payment of five billion euros to pensioners to compensate for inflation this year would leave the government needing to finding savings equivalent to around 0.5% of GDP to meet its deficit target for the year or to further draw on the pension reserve fund. "The reserve fund is there to be used," Montoro said on Thursday.

Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said Thursday the government intends to introduce changes to the pension system to bring the effective retirement age in line with the statutory figure, and to ensure its sustainability by revising the parameters on which benefits are calculated.

Comment on this Story

Be the first to comment on this Story !!

Related Partners

Recommended Items

Related Articles

Related Blogs