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Posted : 2012-11-28 09:22
Updated : 2012-11-28 09:22

Korea logs current account surplus for 9th month in Oct.

Korea posted a current account surplus for the ninth straight month in October as exports gained ground, weathering the global slowdown and the local currency's gain, the central bank said Wednesday.

The current account surplus reached $5.82 billion in October, down from a revised $5.91 billion in the previous month, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). The current account is the broadest measure of cross-border trade.

In the first 10 months of this year, the cumulative current account surplus reached $34.13 billion, surpassing the central bank's 2012 surplus estimate of $34 billion.
The BOK said that the country is expected to see a considerable amount of the surplus for November.

"The surplus trend is likely to go on for November on the back of growing exports of petrochemical goods and telecommunications products," Yang Jae-ryong, the director of the BOK's monetary and financial statistics division, said at a press conference.

Despite the slowing economic growth, the local currency has appreciated more than 6 percent to the dollar so far this year as foreign capital is flowing into Korea amid quantitative easing by major economies.

South Korea's goods balance logged a surplus of $5.21 billion in October, down from a revised $5.49 billion the previous month, the BOK added.

Exports and imports gained ground in October, easing some concerns that exports remain weak amid the global slowdown and imports fall due to sluggish domestic demand.

Overseas shipments rose 3.9 percent on-year to $48.21 billion and imports inched up 0.5 percent to $43 billion.

Yang said that exports seemed to recover after remaining weak in the second and third quarter due to a high comparison base last year, when exports got a boost from the fallout of Japan's earthquake and tsunami.

"A pickup in imports of capital goods also can be seen as an indicator that investment is recovering," Yang said.

The service account, which includes outlays by South Koreans on overseas trips, posted a surplus of $378.3 million last month, compared with a surplus of $323.3 million in September.

Meanwhile, the capital and financial account, covering cross-border investments, posted a net outflow of $7.27 billion last month, larger than a net outflow of a revised $4.93 billion the previous month, the central bank said.

The account of stock and bond investment logged a net outflow of $4.66 billion last month, the largest net outflow since $7.03 billion in July 2008.(Yonhap)


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