Almost NOK 100 billion in surplus

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The net compensation of employees and investment income contributed to pushing up the balance of income and current transfers with NOK 2 billion in the first quarter, while current transfers to abroad contributed negatively. Overall, the deficit in the balance of income and current transfers was NOK 1.7 billion in the first quarter. This is NOK 35 billion lower than the deficit in the first quarter of 2009. Normally, the dividends to abroad are paid in the first quarter. In the first quarter of 2010, NOK 20 billion was paid in dividends; NOK 31 billion less than in 2009.

Continued high surplus on goods and services balance

The goods and services balance amounted to NOK 100 billion in the first quarter of 2010. This is clearly higher than the previous three quarters, but NOK 10 billion lower than in the first quarter of 2009. Compared to the first quarter of 2009, the total export value is 3 per cent lower, while the total import was 1 per cent higher.

The export value of goods was NOK 201 billion, which is NOK 8 billion lower than in the first quarter of 2009, but NOK 4.5 billion higher than in the fourth quarter of 2009. The export value of crude oil was virtually unchanged from the fourth quarter 2009 to the first quarter of 2010, but clearly higher than in the first quarter of 2009. However, the export value of natural gas, etc. was NOK 27 billion lower in the first quarter of 2010 than in the first quarter of 2009, primarily as a result of price reductions.

The import value of goods was estimated at NOK 107 billion in the first quarter. This is NOK 7 billion less than in the fourth quarter last year, but on a par with the import values in the other quarters of 2009.

More details about exports and imports of goods are available in the statistics on external trade in goods.

The balance of services was NOK 6 billion in the first quarter. This is lower than the figures for the previous quarter, and can mostly be explained by less export of services.

Financial account transactions

The Norwegian foreign direct investment abroad in the first quarter of 2010 amounted to NOK 38 billion, and most of the investment applied to shares and other equity capital. Portfolio investment abroad was influenced by positive investment of the Government Pension Fund Global. While the Fund in the fourth quarter of 2009 sold securities to pay off debt (repurchase agreements), the Fund was again a net purchaser of securities in the first quarter of 2010.

Non-residents’ direct investment transactions in Norway came to NOK 3 billion. The figures for the portfolio investment in Norway were heavily influenced by large security loans raised by mortgage companies.

There are some uncertainties in the figures for the non-financial companies due to problems with the reports.

Balance of payments. 1. quarter 2007 to 4. quarter 2009. NOK billion
2007 2008 2009 1. quarter 2007 2. quarter 2007 3. quarter 2007 4. quarter 2007 1. quarter 2008 2. quarter 2008 3. quarter 2008 4. quarter 2008 1. quarter 2009 2. quarter 2009 3. quarter 2009 4. quarter 2009 1. quarter 2010
Balance of goods and services 348 487 352 89 80 76 103 125 133 110 121 109 75 71 98 99
Balance of income and current transfers -28 -14 -15 -24 -24 17 2 -25 -15 -5 20 -36 16 2 4 -2
Current account balance 321 473 337 66 56 93 105 100 117 115 141 73 91 72 102 98
Capital transfers etc. to abroad, net 1 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1
Net lending 361 472 332 82 67 95 117 100 117 114 141 73 90 72 102 97
Direct investment, net 117 111 173 5 53 30 38 26 34 44 6 17 28 78 46 35
Portifolio investment, net 648 645 16 117 33 282 216 135 77 209 224 84 29 27 134 13
Other investment, net 560 -280 202 383 149 120 -91 -80 3 -127 -77 -21 71 -34 185 58
Revaluations, net -178 -164 122 -61 -60 -68 11 -87 -115 81 44 -239 221 134 9 86
Increase in Norway`s net assets 183 308 460 21 7 27 129 13 3 195 97 -167 311 206 111 183

Source: Statistics Norway

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