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French Equivalent: Balance des paiements - Eurostat

The balance of payments is a record of a country's international transactions with the rest of the world. This is equivalent to the transactions between residents of a country and non-residents. The balance of payments is a statistical statement that summarises the transactions of an economy with the rest of the world. Transactions are organized in two different accounts, the current account and the capital and financial account, whose sum, in principle, should be zero, as for each credit transaction there is a corresponding one on the debit side. Thus, the current account balance determines the exposure of an economy vis-à-vis the rest of the world, whereas the capital and financial account explains how it is financed.

These transactions, which are recorded by a double- entry system of book-keeping, involve goods, services, transfers, loans granted or received, market securities, foreign exchange etc.

International trade in services is shown in the current account balance of payments statistics and forms part of what is known as "invisibles". The current account balance constitutes the sole source of comparable data on international cross-border statistics on services.

Source Publication:
Balance of Payments, Quarterly Statistics, Eurostat, page. 8
Eurostat, website.

Cross References:
Balance of payments – BPM


Version Indicator: Eurostat

Statistical Theme: Financial statistics - Balance of payments

Created on Tuesday, September 25, 2001

Last updated on Wednesday, March 27, 2013