EU seasonally adjusted current account of the balance of payments recorded a surplus of €59.9 billion (1.8% of GDP) in the 1st quarter of 2020, down from a surplus of €78.6 billion (2.2% of GDP) in the fourth quarter of 2019 and from a surplus of €102.0 billion (3.0% of GDP) in the first quarter of 2019, according to estimates released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
Cyprus recorded a €0.9 bn deficit in Q1 2020, up from €-0.5 bn in Q4 2019 and €0.6 bn in Q1 2019. The trade in services balance was positive at €0.4 bn in Q1 2020, down from €1.2 bn in Q4 2019 and €0.5 bn in Q1 2019.
Greece recorded a €3.5 bn deficit in Q1 2020, €2.6 bn deficit in Q1 2019 and €-3,7 in Q1 2019. The trade in services balance was positive at €1.1 bn in Q1 2020, down from €2.7 bn in Q4 2019 and € 1.5bn in Q1 2019.
In the first quarter of 2020 compared with the fourth quarter of 2019, based on seasonally adjusted data, the surplus of the goods account decreased (+€82.3 bn compared to +€88.0 bn), while the surplus of the services account moved to deficit (-€3.1 bn compared to +€9.6 bn). Deficit of the primary income account grew (-€4.8 bn compared to -€2.6 bn), while the deficit of the secondary income account fell (-€14.5 bn compared to -€16.4 bn). The deficit of the capital account decreased (-€4.3 bn compared to -€8.7 bn).
In the first quarter of 2020, based on non-seasonally adjusted data, the EU recorded external current account surpluses with the United Kingdom (+€57.6 bn), the USA (+€37.7 bn), Switzerland (+€18.3 bn), Canada (+€7.2 bn), Brazil (+€4.8 bn) and Hong Kong (+€3.5 bn). Deficits were registered with China (-€24.6 bn), offshore financial centres (-€11.6 bn), Russia (-€4.8 bn), India (-€1.8 bn) and Japan (-€1.1 bn).
Based on non-seasonally adjusted data, direct investment assets of the EU decreased in the first quarter of 2020 by €40.2 bn, while direct investment liabilities fell by €32.3 bn. As a result, the EU was a net recipient of direct investment from rest of the world in the first quarter of 2020 by €7.9 bn. Portfolio investment recorded a net inflow of €218.4 bn, while for other investment there was a net outflow of €236.5 bn.