Germany: Trade surplus widens in August on rebounding exports
October 10, 2016
The seasonally- and calendar-adjusted trade surplus increased from EUR 19.4 billion in July to EUR 22.2 billion in August, driven up by recovering exports. On a seasonally-adjusted basis, exports surged 5.4% from the previous month in the largest increase since May 2010, which contrasted July’s 2.6% drop. Imports also recovered, turning around from a 0.7% decline in July to 3.0% growth in August.
Compared to the same month last year, exports increased 9.8% in the largest increase in over a year, which contrasted July’s pronounced 10.0% decrease. Imports also rebounded, rising 5.3% compared to the same month last year (July: -6.5% yoy), the highest rate in nine months. In the 12 months up to August, exports grew an annual 2.1%, up from July’s 1.8% increase. At the same time, imports increased 1.4% (July: +1.3% yoy), pushing up the 12-month trade balance from July’s EUR 247.3 billion to another record-high of EUR 250.3 billion in August.
In a recent statement, the Federation of German Wholesale, Foreign Trade and Services (BGA) commented that August’s strong trade data made up for July’s slump, thanks to solid exports, boosted by demand from both EU and non-EU countries. The BGA was nevertheless cautious about the prospects for trade since the difficult global environment is set to persist in the coming months and German trade will likely continue to experience fluctuations.