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Foreign accounts positive for sixth month in a row

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Brazil’s foreign account saw a positive balance for the sixth consecutive month in September—$2.32 billion—the Central Bank reported today (Oct. 23). It was the first positive result for a September since 2007 ($482 million) and the highest for the month in the time series initiated in 1995.

Last year, in the same month, a deficit was reported at $2.727 billion in current transactions (foreign accounts), which are purchases and sales of goods and services and income transfers between Brazil and other countries.

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“Following the trend of previous months, this reversion came as a result of the $2.1 billion increase in the surplus in the balance trade for goods and the reductions of $2.1 billion and $885 million in the deficits in primary income [profits and dividends, as well as interest and salary payments] and services [international travel, transport etc.], respectively,” the Central Bank states in its report.

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From January to October, a deficit of $6.476 billion was posted under current transactions, against $36.748 billion in the same period in 2019.

According to Fernando Rocha, head of the Central Bank’s Statistics Department, the drop in the year-to-date deficit and the positive monthly figures can be explained by the retraction of the demand for goods and services overseas, due to the crisis brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. “The lower demand for imported goods and services decreases the deficit in current transactions,” he said.

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In the 12-month period ending in September, there was a $20.7 billion deficit in current transactions (1.37 percent of the gross domestic product, or GDP), compared to the negative balance of $25.7 billion (1.66 percent of the GDP) in the same period ending in August.

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