China: Exports rebound strongly in April
Exports surprised to the upside in April and expanded 12.9% over the previous year. The print contrasted the 2.7% drop in March and exceeded market expectations of a 6.3% expansion. Analysts warn, however, that Chinese exporters could be front-loading shipments in the event of rising trade disputes between China and the U.S
Import growth accelerated to 21.5% in annual terms in April, up from 14.4% in March. Moreover, the print beat analysts’ expectations of a 16.0% increase. April’s healthy reading reflects the strength of China’s domestic demand and rising commodity prices.
As a result of the fastest acceleration in import growth, the trade surplus came in at USD 28.8 billion in April, below USD 36.3 billion in the same month a year prior (March 2018: USD 5.0 billion deficit). The 12-month moving sum of the trade surplus declined from USD 408 billion in March to USD 401 billion in April.