October 23, 2012 / 1:10 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Brazil current account gap wider on weaker trade surplus

* Foreign direct investment falls to $4.4 bln in Sept

* Brazil posts larger-than-expected $2.6 bln c/a deficit

BRASILIA, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Brazil’s current account deficit widened in September from a year ago due to a weaker trade surplus amid a slowing global economy, central bank data showed on Tuesday.

Brazil had a current account deficit of $2.596 billion in September, stable from the gap posted in August, but above the $2.45 billion median forecast of analysts surveyed by Reuters.

Brazil’s current account deficit, a broad measure of a country’s foreign transactions including trade in goods and services but also profit remittances and interest payments, in September of last year was $2.234 billion.

The current account deficit in the 12 months through September was equal to 2.15 percent of the country’s gross domestic product, the central bank said, up from a previously reported 2.12 percent in August.

A strong flow of foreign investment in Brazil despite the weak global economy has so far helped cover the country’s current account gap this year.

Foreign direct investment in Latin America’s largest economy was $4.393 billion in September, down from $5.03 billion in August and more than the expected $4 billion.

Last month the central bank cut its 2012 current account deficit estimate to $53 billion from $56 billion and raised its FDI to $60 billion from $50 billion.

President Dilma Rousseff’s government efforts to open up public infrastructure concessions to private investors and major sporting events like the 2014 Soccer World Cup are expected to attract investors in coming years.

Signs of a recovery in local economic activity is also expected to bring in more foreign capital.

Earlier this month, the trade ministry reported that Brazil’s trade surplus narrowed for the sixth straight month to $ 2.557 billion in September, as a slowing global economy undermined prices of the commodity powerhouse’s key exports.

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