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Analysts put Hungary c/a surplus at €1.8 bln-2.5 bln for 2012

Hungary's current-account surplus could reach €1.8 billion-2.5 billion this year, analysts told MTI on Friday, after the National Bank of Hungary published fresh c/a data for 2011.

As a sum of quarterly figures, Hungary's c/a surplus came to €1.43 billion in 2011, the MNB said early Friday.

Erste Bank's Zoltán Árokszállási said that although Hungary's goods trade surplus narrowed from quarter to quarter in 2011, falling from €1.3 billion in Q1 to €795 million in Q4, the trend could be reversed in 2012. He explained that austerity measures were likely to reduce household consumption and investments, weighing on imports, while exports could pick up.

He put the c/a surplus for 2012 at €2.5 billion, but said it could be as high as €3 billion.

Takarékbank's Gergely Suppán said a c/a surplus of €1.8 billion for 2012 was a "cautious estimate", adding that it could rise over €2 billion.

Suppán noted that €2.5 billion of the €5 billion gross FDI inflows and €2.7 billion of the €3 billion loan outflows in Q4 was "capital in transit" related to one specific group. Discounting this affect, FDI came to about €2.5 billion, he added.