Germany: Trade surplus narrows in October
December 9, 2013
In October, the seasonally and calendar-adjusted trade balance recorded a EUR 16.8 billion surplus. The result was below both the EUR 18.7 billion surplus observed in September and the EUR 17.8 billion the market had expected.
The trade surplus narrowed in October as imports rose a substantial 2.9% over the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms (September: -1.9% month-on-month). The reading overshot the 1.7% increase the market had expected. Meanwhile, exports rose a mild 0.2% in October, coming in well below both the 1.6% expansion registered in September and market expectations of a 0.5% rise.
Compared to the same month last year, overseas sales rose 0.7% in October (September: +3.5% year-on-year). In contrast, imports decreased 1.5% annually in the same month (September: -0.3% yoy).
Sluggish global trade prompted the Federation of German Wholesale, Foreign Trade and Services (BGA) to revise Germany's exports forecast for this year. The BGA now expects overseas sales to grow nearly 1.0%. The estimate is down from its previous 3.0% expansion.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist