Brazil on course for 2019 record FX outflow of over $43 bln

SAO PAULO, Jan 2 (Reuters) - Brazil posted a foreign exchange outflow of $16.1 billion in the first four weeks of December, central bank figures on Thursday showed, putting the country on track to post a record annual FX outflow last year of more than $43 billion.

The $16.1 billion outflow last month up to Dec. 27 is 25% more than the $12.8 billion outflow in the same period a year earlier, and was driven by a net outflow of $18.8 billion from the financial account, which covers portfolio investment flows.

That financial account net outflow was the largest for any single month since the central bank started compiling comparable records in 1982.

December’s overall net FX outflow is on track to be the largest since September 1998, when the world financial system was reeling from the Russian crisis.

Despite the dollar outflow, Brazil’s real rose than 5% against the greenback in December, supported by central bank intervention the month before to support the currency and a more risk-friendly global market environment.

For the year through Dec. 27, Brazil posted a net FX outflow of $43.25 billion, almost three times the previous record annual outflow of $16.18 billion in 1999 following the currency crisis earlier that year.

$1 = 4.03 reais Reporting by Jose Gomes Neto, Writing by Jamie McGeever Editing by Alistair Bell