Record current account surplus for Australia

Media Release
Released
31/08/2021

Australia's current account surplus in seasonally adjusted terms increased $1.5 billion to a record $20.5 billion in the June quarter 2021, according to latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Balance of Payments components

The current account surplus was driven by a $3.5 billion increase in the balance on goods and services surplus. Exports of goods and services rose $7.0 billion (6 per cent), while imports of goods and services rose $3.5 billion (4  per cent). The net primary income deficit rose by $1.1 billion to $7.4 billion in the June quarter 2021. 

Head of International Statistics at the ABS, Andrew Tomadini said: "Australia's June quarter record Current Account surplus came off the back of strong bulk commodity prices. In particular, the iron ore price drove a record metal ores and minerals export value of $53.3 billion. Imports continued to rise, driven by increases in fuel imports coinciding with the opening of the Trans-Tasman travel bubble. Government stimulus policies and the easing of freight backlogs resulted in increased imports for transport equipment and machinery across consumption and capital goods.

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The financial account deficit increased by $9.6 billion to $24.2 billion in the June quarter 2021. The movement was due to resurgent offshore investment activity by Australian superannuation and investment funds as a result of a more positive global economic outlook and favourable equity markets conditions overseas. The impact of the financial account deficit and the corresponding valuation changes of $5.6 billion, resulted in Australia's net IIP liability position decreasing by $29.8 billion to $885.1 billion at 30 June 2021.

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Contribution to Gross Domestic Product

In seasonally adjusted chain volume terms, the balance on goods and services surplus decreased $4.9 billion, reducing the surplus to $5.2 billion. Assuming no significant revision to March quarter 2021 estimates of Gross Domestic Product, the balance on goods and services is expected to detract 1.0 percentage point from the June quarter 2021 GDP.

Media notes