South Korea extended its current account surplus for the fourth straight month in August as imports slumped more than exports due to sluggish local demand.
Korea posted a current account surplus of $6.57 billion in August, down from $7.45 billion in the previous month, the Bank of Korea said Thursday.
The country has maintained its surplus streak since May after registering a deficit of $3.33 billion in April, its biggest red in almost a decade.
The goods surplus in August shrank to $7.01 billion from $4.63 billion a year earlier.
Exports tumbled 10.3 percent on year to $40.67 billion while imports dipped 17.3 percent to $33.65 billion. Both exports and imports were down for the sixth straight month. In customs clearance standards, exports were down 10.1 percent at $39.57 billion while imports fell 15.8 percent to $35.73 million.
The service account narrowed its deficit to $800 million from $1.56 billion in the year-ago period. Travel deficit amounted to $470 million.
The primary income account, which includes net flow of dividend payment overseas and net remittance flows from migrant workers, ran a surplus of $630 million, sharply down from $2.02 billion a year ago. This was largely due to the dividend income account, which swung to a $90 million deficit after losing $1.49 billion on year.
The secondary income account posted a deficit of $270 million.
The capital account, which tracks cross-border capital flows, registered a net inflow of $4.84 billion in August.
As for direct investment, Koreans’ investment overseas stretched $2.8 billion while foreigners’ investment in Korea shrank $990 million. Korean overseas securities investment surged $2.83 billion and foreign investment in Korean securities $2.43 billion.
Derivative investment fell $220 million. Assets gained $1.75 billion in alternative category while debt added $850 million.
By Kim Hyo-jin
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