Greece's GDP decreased by 4.5 percent in the third quarter (Q3) of 2010, according to flash estimates of quarterly national accounts released by the independent Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) on Friday, with the Greek economy continuing to move at high negative growth rates.

According to ELSTAT, available data indicate that in the 3rd quarter of 2010, the Gross Domestic Product GDP) decreased by 4.5% in comparison with the 3rd quarter of 2009 and by 1.1% in comparison with the 2nd quarter of 2010.

As already reported, the GDP rate of change between the quarters of 2009 and 2010 should be treated with caution, due to the discontinuity of General Government data series. This issue will be addressed by the end of the year, with the backwards revision of General Government data, an ELSTAT release said.

The significant decrease recorded in final consumption expenditure and gross fixed capital formation, has contributed to the decline of GDP. At the same time, the improvement in the external trade balance has partially offset the effect of the above factors, ELSTAT said.

The quarterly GDP estimates for the period Q1 2004 - Q4 2009 are revised according to the new annual estimates (2004-2009) of September 2010. The revision of the data for this period, in combination with the revision of the General Government accounts, have resulted in new estimates for the first two quarters of 2010, ELSTAT concluded.