Turkey Posts Record Annual Current-Account Surplus for August

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(Bloomberg) -- Turkey’s annualized current-account surplus widened to a record in August as weak consumer demand continued to curb imports.

The current-account balance -- the broadest measure of trade and investment -- posted a surplus of $2.6 billion in the month. The increase brought the annualized surplus to $5.1 billion, the biggest in data going back to 1999, the central bank said on Friday. The median of 10 estimates in a Bloomberg survey was for a monthly surplus of $2.85 billion.

Key Insights

  • Friday’s data underscore the scale of the economic adjustment underway in Turkey following last year’s currency crash and aggressive monetary tightening that curbed domestic demand. The annual gap stood at $51.6 billion in the same period a year earlier.
  • Official reserves rose by $254 million and capital outflows were $1.34 billion in the month.
  • Net errors and omissions, or capital movements of unknown origin, showed a monthly outflow of $800 million, taking the year-to-date inflows to $2.59 billion.

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  • The current account will return to a deficit of 1.2% of output in 2020 and 0.8% in 2021 after a recording a slight surplus this year, Treasury & Finance Minister Berat Albayrak said last week.

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