Brazil: Current account logs largest surplus on record in April
May 26, 2020
Brazil’s current account balance registered a surplus for the second month straight in April, swinging to a USD 3.8 billion surplus from a USD 1.9 billion deficit in April 2019. This marked the highest surplus since the current series began in January 1995 and followed March’s surplus of USD 0.4 billion (previously reported: USD 0.9 billion).
April’s reading largely reflected a lower primary income deficit as well as a narrower shortfall in the services account. Furthermore, the trade surplus increased in the month. The merchandise trade surplus rose to USD 6.7 billion from USD 5.7 billion in the same month last year on a softer contraction in exports than that of imports. Meanwhile, net foreign direct investment weakened notably in April, totaling USD 0.2 billion (April 2019: USD 5.1 billion).
Accordingly, the 12-month sum of the current account balance narrowed to a USD 44.4 billion shortfall, which equates to approximately 2.6% of GDP, from the USD 50.1 billion deficit registered in the 12 months ending in March (2.9% of GDP).
Author: Hanna Andersson, Economist