Malaysia: Exports contract at fastest pace in over five years in February
April 7, 2015
Exports declined 16.7% in annual terms in February, which was down from the 8.2% contraction tallied in January. The result undershot market expectations and marked the lowest reading in over five years. According to the Department of Statistics, the deterioration in exports was mainly driven by a decline in shipments of refined petroleum products, liquefied natural gas, rubber and palm oil. Meanwhile, imports declined 7.3% in February, which as a less pronounced drop than the 12.5% decline recorded in the previous month.
The trade balance fell sharply from a USD 2.5 billion surplus in January to a USD 1.3 billion surplus in February (February 2014: USD 3.2 billion). The 12-month moving sum of the trade balance ticked down from a USD 25.9 billion surplus in January to a USD 24.0 billion surplus in February.
Author: Cecilia Simkievich, Economist