South Korea posts record cur­rent ac­count sur­plus over Novem­ber

The China Post - - WORLD BUSINESS -

South Korea’s cur­rent ac­count sur­plus rose to a monthly record in Novem­ber as slump­ing oil prices slashed the value of im­ports, state data showed Tues­day.

The pre­lim­i­nary fig­ure of US$ 11.4 bil­lion shat­tered the pre­vi­ous monthly record of US$ 11.1 bil­lion set in Oc­to­ber 2013, ac­cord­ing to data from the cen­tral Bank of Korea ( BOK).

The cur­rent ac­count — the broad­est mea­sure of for­eign trade in goods and ser­vices — has been in the black for two years and nine months — the long­est streak of sur­plus since 1989.

Ex­ports, which ac­count for more than a half of the Asia’s fourth- largest econ­omy, stood at US$ 50.2 bil­lion, down from US$ 52 bil­lion in Oc­to­ber.

Im­ports dropped to US$ 40 bil­lion from US$ 43.5 bil­lion thanks to fall­ing oil prices, log­ging a sur­plus of US$ 10.2 bil­lion in the goods ac­count.

The South im­ports almost all of its en­ergy needs from over­seas.

The ser­vices ac­count, which in­cludes spend­ing on over­seas trips and loy­alty pay­ments, saw its chronic deficit nar­row down to US$ 200 mil­lion from US$ 250 mil­lion a month ago.

The in­come ac­count, which tracks wages as well as earn­ings on fi­nan­cial in­vest­ments, posted a sur­plus of US$ 1.7 bil­lion thanks to in­creased div­i­dend and in­ter­est earn­ings.

The fig­ure com­pared to sur­plus of US$ 970 mil­lion Oc­to­ber.

The coun­try has racked up a cur­rent ac­count sur­plus of US$ 81.9 bil­lion so far this year.

It is on course to meet or ex­ceed the cen­tral bank’s tar­get sur­plus of US$ 84 bil­lion in 2014 — an an­nual record.

The BOK how­ever es­ti­mated ear­lier the cur­rent ac­count sur- a in plus for next year would slump to US$ 70 mil­lion.

In­dus­trial Out­put Rises 1.3%

in Novem­ber

South Korea’s in­dus­trial out­put rose 1.3 per­cent in Novem­ber from a month ear­lier thanks to in­creased auto and mem­ory chip pro­duc­tion, state data showed Tues­day.

The rise in pro­duc­tion in the min­ing, man­u­fac­tur­ing, gas and elec­tric­ity in­dus­tries com­pared with a re­vised fall of 1.7 per­cent in Oc­to­ber, state- run Statis­tics Korea said.

Out­put in man­u­fac­tur­ing alone rose 1.4 per­cent from a month ago, bol­stered by pro­duc­tion of cars and semi­con­duc­tors that rose by 9 and 2.9 per­cent, re­spec­tively.

Pro­duc­tion in the ser­vice sec­tor how­ever shrank 0.3 per­cent on month, after inch­ing up 0.8 per­cent in Oc­to­ber and 0.3 per­cent in Septem­ber.

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