Glossary:Balance of payments
The balance of payments is a statistical summary of the transactions of a given economy with the rest of the world. It comprises three elements:
- the current account covers international transactions in goods, services, income, and current transfers;
- the financial account deals with transactions involving financial claims on, or liabilities to, the rest of the world, including international purchases of securities, such as stocks and bonds;
- the capital account covers international capital transfers (e.g. debt forgiveness) and the acquisition/disposal of non-produced, nonfinancial assets (such as patents).