Germany: Trade surplus narrows in February on contracting exports
April 9, 2014
The seasonally- and calendar-adjusted trade balance totaled EUR 15.7 billion in February. The result came in below both the EUR 17.3 billion observed in January and the EUR 17.8 billion the markets had expected.
The trade surplus narrowed in February as exports contracted a seasonally-adjusted 1.3% over the previous month, which contrasted the 2.2% increase observed in January. The reading also exceeded the 0.5% decrease the market had expected. Meanwhile, imports increased 0.4% in February (January: +4.1% month-on-month), overshooting the 0.1% expected by the market.
Compared to the same month last year, exports expanded 4.6% in February (January: +2.9% year-on-year) and imports increased 6.4% (January: -4.1% yoy). In the 12 months up to February, exports totaled EUR 1.1 trillion and the trade surplus reached EUR 200.6 billion.
The Federation of German Wholesale, Foreign Trade and Services (BGA) expects exports to expand 3.0% in 2014 and to reach a record level of EUR 1.14 trillion. The BGA expects the trade surplus to reach EUR 224 billion.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist