The February current account balance came out significantly ahead of estimates, showing a high surplus. The figure was boosted by relatively low dividend outflow and as well as by significant inflow from the EU funds. The income balance was therefore not that negative (CZK -6bn), while the balance of current transfers showed a high surplus (CZK 8bn).
The surprise is thus in part due to the irregular flows between the Czech budget and the EU. Moreover, recently the current account data were subject of big revisions after changes in methodology. We therefore believe that the February figures will not have any significant impact on markets although they are quite far from consensus. Trade balance was positive - the surplus reached CZK 8bn - and so was the balance of services (CZK 5bn). This component has got back to positive figures after the methodology change and now posts quite stable results.
The February C/A data do not change our view on future policy of the central bank.
Actual C/A (Feb): CZK 15.95bn
Consensus: CZK 3.2bn
Previous (Jan): CZK -0.31bn