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Serb Eurobond Sale Keeps Current-Account Gap on Target

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Dec. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Serbia’s current-account deficit widened 24 percent in the first 10 months, while a sovereign bond sale in September prevented the gap from overshooting the central bank’s full-year forecast.

The shortfall rose to 2.68 billion euros ($3.56 billion) through October, as the trade deficit expanded 8.7 percent, remittances dropped 8.6 percent and net foreign investments remained weak throughout the year, according to the balance of payments report published by the Belgrade-based Narodna Banka Srbije today.

“If there had been no Eurobond sale, the current-account deficit would’ve already exceeded 3 billion euros,” said Ljiljana Grubic, an analyst at Raiffeisen Banka AD in Belgrade. Serbia raised $1 billion from a Eurobond sale in September and $750 million in November.

The central bank sees the full-year current-account gap at 3.1 billion euros, or 10.7 percent of gross domestic product.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gordana Filipovic in Belgrade at gfilipovic@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at jagomez@bloomberg.net

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