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Germany achieves balanced budget ahead of plan

Due to low interest rates and higher tax revenue.

Germany says that in 2014 it achieved its first balanced budget since 1969, a year earlier than planned, thanks to low interest rates, higher tax revenue and other factors.

The Finance Ministry said in a statement Tuesday that historically low interest rates meant that Germany paid less on previous credit, and overall spending was a billion euros less than budgeted, at €295.5 billion.

Meantime, tax revenues were €2.6 billion higher than budgeted. In addition, a December court ruling forced utility companies to pay the government €2.3 billion as part of a tax on the fuel used to produce nuclear power.

Germany had previously planned on new net borrowing of €6.5 billion euros in 2014 and a balanced budget in 2015.

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