Australia's current account deficit narrowed to 10.14 billion AU dollars (9.05 billion U.S. dollars) in December quarter 2013, due to a rise in mining and resources exports, figures released on Tuesday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) show.
The ABS said the current account deficit fell 2.4 billion AU dollars (2.14 billion U.S. dollars), or 19 percent, in the December quarter, in seasonally adjusted terms, following a deficit of 12.54 billion AU dollars (11.19 billion U.S. dollars) in the September quarter.
Exports of goods and services rose 2,614 million AU dollars (2, 332 million U.S. dollars), or three percent, in the quarter while imports of goods and services fell 304 million AU dollars (271 million U.S. dollars), according the ABS.
In seasonally adjusted, chain volume terms, the net goods and services surplus rose 2.51 billion AU dollars (2.24 billion U.S. dollars) to 10.75 billion AU dollars (9.59 billion U.S. dollars) in the December quarter, which would contribute 0.6 percentage points to growth in the December quarter measure of gross domestic product (GDP), the bureau said.
Australia's net foreign debt liability increased 34.3 billion AU dollars (30.6 billion U.S. dollars) to 852.9 billion AU dollars (760.98 billion U.S. dollars) in the December quarter.
Global investment banking firm JP Morgan economist Ben Jarman told the Australian Associated Press (AAP) that the improvement in the current account deficit was mainly due to an increase in mining and resources exports.
"Net trade will make a solid contribution to tomorrow's fourth quarter GDP report," he said.
"On the exports side today, the results were firm, as expected, and this is expected to be a persistent bright spot over the foreseeable horizon."