‘Current account’ deficit decrease

IRELAND’s “current account” deficit continued to fall during the second quarter of this year, according to latest figures from the CSO; driven downwards by an increase in merchandise surplus.

The latest quarterly “balance of international payments” figures from the CSO – which measure the flow of income in and out of the economy – showed an overall current account deficit of €1.1 billion for the second three months of the year. This figure was down by about €500 million on the first quarter of the year and by €337m when measured on a year-on-year basis with the corresponding period in 2009.

The country’s merchandise surplus grew by nearly €800m to €9.8bn – on a year-on-year basis – during the second quarter; while its services deficit fell by more than €100m to just over €2.4bn.

The rise in the merchandise surplus also played a major part in Ireland managing to cut its overall annual current account deficit in 2009, by €4.6bn to €4.81bn – its lowest level for five years. The last time the country showed a full-year current account surplus was back in 1999, when a profit of €226m was measured.

Compared to the second quarter of 2009, merchandise exports were up by €1.4bn – to €21.76bn – in the same period this year; with services exports up by the same amount, at €18.25bn (pushed upwards, in the main, by higher computer services exports).


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