Turkey Current-Account Deficit Widens in July on Falling Exports

Turkey’s current-account deficit widened in July as exports fell, led by fewer shipments to Russia.

The shortfall in the current account, the broadest measure of trade in goods and services, widened to $3.15 billion from $2.39 billion a year earlier, Turkey’s central bank said in a statement Thursday. That compares with a median estimate of $3.55 billion in a Bloomberg survey of 12 analysts.

Exports tumbled 16.5 percent to $12 billion in July, while imports fell 7.3 percent to $17.8 billion, according to the data. Shipments to Russia, Turkey’s second-largest trade partner last year, dropped by 48 percent in July from the same month a year ago, official data showed Aug. 31.

The lira pared losses after the data and was trading 0.2 percent lower at 3.0438 per dollar at 10:17 a.m. in Istanbul.

The widening current-account deficit, forecast to be about 5 percent of gross domestic product by year-end, makes Turkey highly dependent on foreign portfolio flows at a time when investor sentiment has soured. The lira has plunged more than 23 percent this year, as violence spiraled following the collapse of a three-year truce with autonomy-seeking Kurdish militants.