External sector statistics

PRESS RELEASE - January 26, 2018

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I - Balance of payments - December 2017

The current account posted a deficit of US$4.3 billion in December, adding up to a deficit of US$9.8 billion in 2017, equal to 0.48% of GDP. In the financial account, net inflows of direct investments in the country totaled US$5.4 billion in December, adding up to US$70.3 billion in the year, or 3.42% of GDP.

The service account posted a deficit of US$3.7 billion in December, increasing 8.7% over the same month of the previous year and 11.2% in the year. Net expenditures on international travel totaled US$1.1 billion, 19.4% higher than in December 2016, as a result of an increase of 16.7% in travel expenditures abroad, exceeding the expansion of 11.1% in travel revenues in the country. In the year, net expenditures on international travel totaled US$13.2 billion, an increase of 55.7% compared to 2016, a level still relatively low, lower than that of 2014 (US$18.7 billion), for example. The equipment rental account fell 12.3% compared to the same month of the previous year and 13.8% in the year, reaching US$16.8 billion, following an opposite trend in relation to other services.

Primary income net expenditures reached US$5.9 billion in the month, down 16% over December 2016, and US$42.6 billion in the year, up 4.6%. Net expenditures on interest reached US$2.2 billion in the month, 30.7% lower than in the same period of the previous year, remaining stable in the annual comparison. Net expenditures on profits and dividends totaled US$3.7 billion in the month, down 3.9% compared to December 2016. In the year, lower revenues on profits and higher expenditures led to an increase of 8.2% in the net flow.

Direct investments abroad added up to US$3.4 billion in the month, totaling US$6.3 billion in 2017, against US$12.8 billion in 2016.

In December, net inflows of direct investment in the country (FDI) totaled US$5.4 billion: US$8.6 billion in equity capital participation and US$3.2 billion in net amortization of intercompany operations. In 2017, net FDI totaled US$70.3 billion, 10.1% lower than in 2016.

Portfolio investments - liabilities registered net outflows of US$3.4 billion in the month, closing the year with outflows of US$1.1 billion (net outflows of US$19.8 billion in 2016). Securities traded on the domestic market registered net outflows of US$5.7 billion in December, while those traded on the foreign market registered net amortizations of US$422 million. Liabilities of investment in stocks and investment funds, however, resulted in net inflows of US$2.8 billion in the month. In the year, net outflows of US$5.1 billion were observed in securities traded in the foreign market; stock and investment funds resulted in net inflows of US$5.7 billion.

Other investment - liabilities posted net inflows of US$3.6 billion in the month and US$6.5 billion in the year. Highlights in 2017 were increase in liability of trade credits, US$17.4 billion, and reduction in the amount owed in loans, US$8.2 billion

II - International reserves

In December, international reserves totaled US$374.0 billion in the cash concept, down US$7.1 billion compared to the previous month. This contraction was due to net concessions in repo credit lines, US$8 billion, and variation in the price of portfolio assets, US$524 million. Earnings on reserves totaled US$348 million in the month, while parity variations contributed to increase the stock by US$913 million. According to the liquidity concept, including assets associated with repo credit operations, the stock of reserves reached US$382.0 billion in December, down US$916 million when compared to the previous month.

III - External debt

The estimated gross external debt for December 2017 totaled US$309.5 billion, down US$8.9 billion compared to the amount estimated for September 2017. The estimated long-term debt reached US$258.4 billion, down US$6.8 billion, while the short-term debt totaled US$51.1 billion, down US$2 billion, in the same period.

Variation in the long-term external debt over this period mainly resulted from exchange variation, which contributed to reduce the stock by US$7.1 billion. Regarding the evolution of short-term external debt, it should be highlighted net amortizations of loans by the financial sector, US$2.5 billion.