EU28 current account surplus €38.7 bn (Third quarter of 2018)

Eurostat January 2018

The EU28 seasonally adjusted current account of the balance of payments recorded a surplus of €38.7 billion (1.0% of GDP) in the third quarter of 2018, down from a surplus of €59.9 billion (1.5% of GDP) in the second quarter of 2018 and from a surplus of €60.4 billion (1.6% of GDP) in the third quarter of 2017, according to estimates released today, 14 January 2018, by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

A decrease
In the third quarter of 2018 compared with the second quarter of 2018, based on seasonally adjusted data, the surplus of the goods account decreased (+€10.2 bn compared to +€24.4 bn), as did the surplus of the services account (+€49.3 bn compared to +€51.0 bn) and the surplus in the primary income account (+€0.4 bn compared to +€5.2 bn). The deficit of the secondary income account increased (-€21.2 bn compared to -€20.8 bn), as did the deficit of the capital account (-€3.4 bn compared to -€3.2 bn).

Main partners
In the third quarter of 2018, based on non-seasonally adjusted data, the EU28 recorded external current account surpluses with the USA (+€56.9 bn), Switzerland (+€20.8 bn), Canada (+€8.9 bn), Hong Kong (+€7.3 bn), Brazil (+€6.3 bn) and India (+€1.1 bn). Deficits were registered with China (-€29.6 bn), Russia (-€12.6 bn), Japan (-€1.8 bn) and offshore financial centres (-€0.4 bn).

Financial account
Based on non-seasonally adjusted data, direct investment assets of the EU28 grew in the third quarter of 2018 by €68.6 bn, while direct investment liabilities increased by €21.7 bn. As a result, the EU28 was a net direct investor in the third quarter of 2018 by €46.9 bn. Portfolio investment recorded a net inflow of €12.0 bn, and for other investment there was a net outflow of €18.1 bn.

Current account of Member States (including intra-EU flows)
As concerns the total (intra-EU plus extra-EU) current account balances of the EU28 Member States, based on available non-seasonally adjusted data, eighteen recorded surpluses and ten deficits in the third quarter of 2018.

The highest surpluses were observed in Germany (+€51.7 bn), the Netherlands (+€20.5 bn), Italy (+€15.1 bn), Ireland (+€9.1 bn) and Denmark (+€5.9), and the largest deficits in the United Kingdom (-€35.4 bn), Romania (-€3.2 bn), France and Poland (both -€2.5 bn).

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