FRANKFURT, Sept 18, 2009 (AFP) - The eurozone's balance of payments swung back into positive territory in July for the first time in more than a year, showing a surplus of 6.6 billion euros (9.6 billion dollars), the European Central Bank said Friday.
The last time the balance of payments, an overall measure of all current payments into and out of a country or region, showed a surplus was in February 2008, when it came to 2.6 billion euros.
On the financial account, the ECB reported a net inflow of 18 billion euros, as more money was ploughed into eurozone assets than was invested abroad by eurozone companies and institutions.
The balance of payments is a closely watched indicator of the ability of the area concerned to pay its way in the world. It is important for the long-term confidence of investors and trading partners.
On Thursday, official European Union data showed the eurozone had posted a seven-year trade surplus high of 12.6 billion euros, an additional sign of European economic recovery.