The current account in December last year returned to the black.
The Bank of Korea on Feb. 8 said its provisional data on the balance of payments in December last year showed a current-account surplus of USD 2.68 billion that month.
The figure returned to the black after November that year saw a deficit of USD 220 million. The deficit in the goods account narrowed and the surplus in the primary income account widened as dividend income from the domestic branches of foreign companies in Korea grew.
The current-account balance last year saw a deficit in August, a surplus in September and October, and a return to the red in November.
The surplus for all of last year was USD 29.83 billion, exceeding the bank’s forecast of USD 25 billion.
The goods account, which comprises the biggest portion of the current account, in December finished in the red for the third consecutive month with USD 480 million. Exports reached USD 55.67 billion, down 10.4% or USD 6.47 billion from the same month in 2021, and imports USD 56.15 billion, declining 2.7% or USD 1.56 billion.
The service account saw its second straight month of deficit with USD 1.39 billion, up USD 630 million year on year.
The primary income account, which shows the flow of wages, dividends and interest, saw a surplus of USD 4.79 billion, up from USD 1.66 billion in November last year and higher than USD 1.3 billion in December 2021.
December’s transfer income account saw a deficit of USD 240 million, down from USD 800 million in the same month of 2021.