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Eurozone trade surplus narrows as demand for imports remains strong

  • October 16, 2017
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The eurozone’s trade surplus in goods with the rest of the world fell €1.4bn year-on-year in August as demand in the bloc for imports outstripped increases in export sales.

The euro area recorded a €16.1bn surplus this August compared to a €17.5bn surplus a year earlier. Exports rose 6.8 per cent on the year to €171.5bn, but growth in imports was stronger, increasing 8.6 per cent to €155.4bn.

While the rise in imports shows consumer demand in the continent remains strong, the rate of growth is lower than the increase for the year-to-date from the same period last year. Imports increased 11.1 per cent in the first eight months of the year compared to the same period in 2016.

Trade between eurozone countries grew slightly ahead of trend so far this year, up 7.6 per cent from the same time last year to €132.9bn, against 7.5 per cent for January to August.

Month-on-month, the euro area trade balance slipped €7.1bn on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, down from a €23.2bn surplus in July.

 

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