February 26, 2020 / 5:35 PM / a month ago

UPDATE 1-Argentina registers January primary fiscal deficit of 3.766 bln pesos

(Updates with annual data)

BUENOS AIRES, Feb 26 (Reuters) - Argentina registered a primary fiscal deficit of 3.766 billion pesos ($62.4 million) in January versus a surplus of 16.658 billion pesos the same period a year earlier, the economy ministry said on Wednesday.

The ministry attributed the deficit to a boost in social spending at the beginning of the year.

January interest payments were 87.052 billion pesos, a 13.5% year-on-year increase, the ministry said.

Argentina has large maturing debts in 2020 and tough fiscal targets agreed with the International Monetary Fund as part of a $57 billion standby loan deal.

Argentina registered a primary fiscal deficit of 208.766 billion pesos ($3.475 billion) for 2019, equivalent to -0.96% of gross domestic product. The country ran a primary fiscal deficit of about 120.147 billion pesos in December, the ministry said.

Reporting by Jorge Iorio, writing by Cassandra Garrison; editing by Diane Craft

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