Israel: Merchandise exports slide at a more moderate rate in August
September 13, 2020
Merchandise exports shrank 8.3% over the same month last year in August, on the heels of July’s 13.7% plunge, amid still-tepid demand abroad. Meanwhile, merchandise imports slid 5.2% over the same month last year in August (July: -18.9% yoy), marking the best result since February 2020. As a result, the merchandise trade balance was stable, recording a USD 2.2 billion shortfall in August (July: USD 2.2 billion). Lastly, the trend pointed down, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a USD 21.3 billion deficit in August, compared to the USD 21.3 billion deficit in July.Looking forward, September’s strict lockdown will likely depress exports and imports. Our panelists see exports and imports contracting 12.8% and 11.8% respectively in 2020 as a whole, with a trade deficit of USD 15.3 billion. In 2021, panelists see exports and imports growing 9.3% and 8.9% respectively, with a trade deficit of USD 16.4 billion.
Author: Oliver Reynolds, Economist