2-26-18 9:28 AM EST | Email Article

RIO DE JANEIRO--Brazil's current-account deficit remained steady in January from December, as a rise in foreign direct investment offset a drop in exports.

South America's largest economy posted a current-account deficit of $4.3 billion last month, the same level as in December and less than in January 2017. The 12-month deficit narrowed to $9 billion, or 0.44% of gross domestic product, from $9.76 billion in December.

Foreign direct investment in Brazil stood at $6.5 billion in January, bringing the 12-month total to $65.3 billion, down from $70.3 billion in 2017.

Brazil's current-account deficit has been modest by historical standards, underpinned by strong growth in iron-ore production as well as rising prices for soybeans and oil.

But an unpredictable presidential election in October could spook investors and prompt capital outflows, BMI Research said in a research note Friday.

Economists project the 12-month deficit will expand to $26.6 billion by the end of 2018, according to a weekly survey published by the central bank.


Write to Paul Kiernan at paul.kiernan@wsj.com


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 26, 2018 09:28 ET (14:28 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2018 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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