Israel: Exports fall further in December, rounding off a tepid 2019, while imports rebound
Merchandise exports fell 2.5% in December in USD terms, following November’s revised 0.4% expansion (previously reported: -1.0% year-on-year). As a result, exports declined 4.2% over 2019 as a whole, dragged on by slower global economic momentum, trade tensions and the strong shekel.
In contrast, imports rebounded in December and rose 15.1%, contrasting November’s revised 5.5% decline (previously reported: -6.5% yoy). Imports were thus flat over 2019 as a whole, with higher imports of consumer goods and raw materials offsetting lower imports of investment goods. The trade deficit widened in annual terms from USD 2.0 billion to USD 3.0 billion.