Argentina: Trade balance swings to surplus on plunging imports in September
Exports contracted 4.8% in year-on-year terms in September, following August’s revised 1.6% fall (previously reported: -1.4% year-on-year). September’s drop reflected an over 30% contraction in exports of primary commodities, only partially offset by a strong increase in fuels and energy exports, and by a slight expansion in exports of manufactured products of agricultural origin.
Imports plummeted 21.2% annually in September, a much sharper fall than August’s revised 0.1% dip (previously reported: -0.3% year-on-year). A plunge in capital goods and consumption goods imports, just partially compensated by sturdier energy imports, explain September’s plummet.
Meanwhile, the trade balance swung from a USD 1.1 billion deficit in August to a USD 0.3 billion surplus in September (September 2017: USD 0.7 billion deficit). The 12-month rolling trade deficit came in at USD 9.7 billion (September 2017: USD 5.0 billion shortfall), narrowing from August’s USD 10.7 billion deficit.