Canada current account gap narrows slightly in first quarter

Thu May 30, 2013 8:41am EDT
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada's current account deficit narrowed slightly in the first quarter of 2013 on lower shortfalls on trade in goods and services, Statistics Canada said on Thursday.

The current account deficit totaled C$14.1 billion ($13.6 billion), less than the C$15.5 billion forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll, and smaller than the revised C$14.6 billion gap in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Exports of goods rose 2.4 percent in the period on broad strength in commodities while imports rose by 2.0 percent. As a result, the deficit on trade in goods fell to C$1.7 billion from C$2.1 billion in the fourth quarter.

The deficit on trade in services narrowed to C$5.8 billion from $6.0 billion previously on lower payments on trade in commercial services and higher receipts on transportation services.

The investment income deficit fell to C$4.9 billion in the first quarter from C$5.1 billion in the fourth quarter as Canadian income on foreign securities edged up.

($1=$1.04 Canadian)

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by James Dalgleish)