Israel: Trade deficit widens in October amid surging imports
November 13, 2018
Exports expanded 8.3% year-on-year in October in USD terms, contrasting September’s revised 9.7% contraction (previously reported: -18.0% year-on-year). Trend data for August-October showed that exports of high, medium-low and low technology sectors declined in annual terms, with exports of electronic components and boards; and non-metallic mineral products falling noticeably. On the other hand, exports of medium-high technological goods expanded at a double-digit pace, with a particularly strong showing in motor vehicles exports.
Imports expanded a whopping 21.3% in October over the same month a year prior in USD terms, contrasting September’s slightly revised 3.6% drop (previously reported: -3.5% yoy). Trend data for August-October showed an increase in imports of raw materials, while imports of investment and consumer goods decreased.
Subsequently, the trade deficit widened significantly from USD 1.5 billion in September to USD 3.0 billion in October, which is also up from the USD 2.0 billion shortfall in October 2017. The 12-month rolling trade deficit widened from USD 23.0 billion in September to USD 24.0 billion in October.
Israel Trade Balance Forecast
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect exports and imports to grow 5.9% and 5.7% in 2019, respectively. Our panel expects a trade deficit of USD 15.1 billion in 2018. For 2020, panelists see exports growing 7.7%, imports growing 5.3% and the trade deficit widening to 14.3 USD billion.
Author: Jan Lammersen, Economist