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(LEAD) Current account surplus narrows in July on decreased trade surplus

Economy 10:03 September 07, 2021

(ATTN: ADDS remarks, details in paras 4-6)
By Kim Deok-hyun

SEOUL, Sept. 7 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's current account surplus slightly narrowed in July due to reduced trade surplus, although exports maintained strong growth, central bank data showed Tuesday.

The current account surplus reached US$8.21 billion in July, narrowing from a surplus of $8.85 billion the previous month, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). The current account is the broadest measure of cross-border trade.

Since the country logged a deficit of $3.33 billion in April last year, the largest in almost a decade, on faltering exports amid the pandemic, the current account has stayed in the black.

(LEAD) Current account surplus narrows in July on decreased trade surplus - 1

South Korea posted a current account surplus for the 15th straight month in July.

In the first seven months of this year, the accumulative current account surplus amounted to $52.55 billion, compared with $26.06 billion for the same period last year.

A BOK official said the annual surplus may reach around $80 billion as the trend is expected to continue into the second half on brisk exports.

The goods balance logged a surplus of $5.73 billion in July, smaller than the surplus of $7.01 billion the previous month.

The service account, which includes outlays by South Koreans on overseas trips, logged a deficit of $80 million in July, compared with a shortfall of $950 million in May.

The primary income account, which tracks wages of foreign workers and dividend payments overseas, logged a surplus of $2.8 billion in the month, bigger than a surplus of $1.69 billion in June.

Exports, which account for half of the South Korean economy, climbed 29.6 percent on-year in July on the back of brisk demand for chips and cars.

Outbound shipments came to $55.4 billion in July, extending their gains to the ninth consecutive month as the global economy maintained a recovery.

The monthly export volume marked the highest level since South Korea started compiling related data in 1956. The country's exports over the first seven months of 2021 came to $358.7 billion, also setting a fresh high.

kdh@yna.co.kr
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