(Adds statement from minister, total financial result)
BUENOS AIRES Feb 24 Argentina posted a primary
fiscal surplus of 3.6 billion pesos($231.72 million at the
current exchange rate) in January, the first positive monthly
result since January 2016, the Treasury Ministry said on Friday.
The primary budget balance, which measures government
spending relative to income and does not include debt payments,
is followed by the markets as an indicator of Argentina's
ability to meet its financial obligations.
In a statement, Treasury Minister Nicolas Dujovne said the
result was consistent with the ministry's fiscal target for the
first quarter of 2017, which is a deficit of 0.6 percent of
gross domestic product (GDP). For the full year, the government
is targeting a fiscal deficit of 4.2 percent of GDP.
The total financial result, which includes interest payments
on public debt, was a deficit of 5.6 billion pesos.
($1 = 15.4800 Argentine pesos)
(Reporting by Luc Cohen; Editing by Bernadette Baum)