Greek current account deficit up yoy in April
Greek current account deficit up yoy in April
  Economy  |  Greece  |  Data

Greek current account deficit up yoy in April

In April 2024, the current account deficit recorded an increase of €822.0 million year-on-year and stood at €2.7 billion.
RE+D magazine
20.06.2024

In April 2024, the current account deficit increased year-on-year, mainly due to a deterioration in the balance of goods and, to a lesser extent, in the secondary income account, while the balance of services and the primary income account improved slightly.

In April 2024, the current account deficit recorded an increase of €822.0 million year-on-year and stood at €2.7 billion.

The goods deficit widened, reflecting a larger rise in imports than exports. At current prices, exports increased by 11.8% (6.9% at constant prices) and imports grew by 21.4% (21.5% at constant prices). Specifically, non-oil goods exports at current prices rose by 15.5% (11.1% at constant prices), while the corresponding imports increased by 23.3% (23.7% at constant prices).

A small increase in the services surplus is attributable to an improvement in the travel services balance, which was partly offset by a decrease in the surplus of, primarily, the transport balance and, secondarily, the other services balance. Compared with April 2023, non-residents’ arrivals rose by 13.9% and the relevant receipts grew by 15.9%.

The deficit of the primary income account decreased slightly year-on-year, as a result of lower net interest, dividend and profit payments, which were partly offset by a decrease in net receipts of other primary income. The deficit of the secondary income account registered a small increase compared with April 2023, reflecting a rise in general government net payments, which was offset to a degree by a shift from net payments to net receipts in the other sectors of the economy excluding general government.

In January-April 2024, the current account deficit rose by €1.1 billion compared with the first four months of 2023 and stood at €6.8 billion.

The goods deficit grew, reflecting a simultaneous drop in exports and increase in imports. At current prices, exports dropped by 5.7% (‑7.2% at constant prices) and imports grew by 3.5% (6.2% at constant prices). More specifically, non-oil goods exports at current prices declined by 3.5%, while the corresponding imports increased by 7.9% (‑6.0% and 8.7% at constant prices, respectively).

The surplus of the services balance widened, mainly due to improvements in the travel balance and, to a lesser extent, the transport balance, which were partly offset by a decrease in the surplus of the other services balance. Compared with January-April 2023, non-residents’ arrivals rose by 20.0% and the relevant receipts grew by 22.0%.

The primary income account registered a deficit, against a surplus in the same period of 2023, owing to a drop in net receipts of other primary income. The secondary income account surplus increased during the same period year-on-year, as a result of higher net receipts of the other sectors of the economy excluding general government.

Capital account

In April 2024, the capital account showed a deficit, against a surplus in April 2023, which came to €115.3 million, reflecting chiefly net payments, instead of net receipts, recorded in the other sectors of the economy excluding general government.

In January-April 2024, the capital account showed a deficit, against a surplus in the corresponding period of 2023, which came to €540.2 million, both due to a decrease in general government net receipts and to a shift from net receipts to net payments in the other sectors of the economy excluding general government.

Combined current and capital account

In April 2024, the deficit of the combined current and capital account (corresponding to the economy’s external financing requirements) grew against April 2023 and stood at €2.8 billion.

In January-April 2024, the deficit of the combined current and capital account increased year-on-year to €7.4 billion.

Financial account

In April 2024, direct investment saw net flows of €60.4 million under residents’ external assets and net flows of €316.9 million under residents’ external liabilities, without any notable transactions.

Under portfolio investment, an increase in residents’ external assets is almost exclusively attributable to a rise of €1.9 billion in residents’ holdings of foreign bonds and Treasury bills. An increase in their liabilities is mainly due to a rise of €79.0 million in non-residents’ holdings of Greek bonds and Treasury bills.

Under other investment, residents’ external assets fell due to a decrease of €1.5 billion in residents’ deposit and repo holdings abroad, which was partly offset by a €228.0 million statistical adjustment associated with the issuance of banknotes and by a rise of €183.8 million in loans extended to non-residents by domestic financial institutions. An increase in residents’ external liabilities reflects chiefly a rise of €3.1 billion in non-residents' deposit and repo holdings in Greece (including the TARGET account) and, to a lesser extent, a €228.0 million statistical adjustment associated with the issuance of banknotes, which were offset, to a degree, by a decline of €395.3 million in the outstanding debt to non-residents.

In January-April 2024, direct investment showed a €503.7 million net flow under residents’ external assets and a €1.5 billion net flow under residents’ external liabilities, representing non-residents' direct investment in Greece.

Under portfolio investment, a rise in residents’ external assets is almost exclusively due to an increase of €3.9 billion in residents’ holdings of foreign bonds and Treasury bills. An increase in their liabilities mainly reflects a rise of €3.7 billion in non-residents' holdings of Greek bonds and Treasury bills.

Under other investment, a drop in residents’ external assets is mainly due to a decline of €4.1 billion in residents’ deposit and repo holdings abroad, and, to a lesser extent, to a €740.0 million statistical adjustment associated with the issuance of banknotes, which were partly offset by a €316.2 million rise in loans extended to non-residents. A decline in their liabilities is mainly associated with a decrease of €2.3 billion in their outstanding debt to non-residents and, to a lesser extent, a €740.0 million statistical adjustment associated with the issuance of banknotes, which were partly offset by a rise of €2.2 billion in non-residents’ deposit and repo holdings in Greece (the TARGET account included).

At end-April 2024, Greece's reserve assets stood at €13.4 billion, compared with €12.0 billion at end-April 2023.