Taiwan: Exports contract in January
February 10, 2014
In January, exports contracted 5.3% over the same month last year, which contrasted the 1.2% expansion tallied in December. The print came in well below the 0.3% contraction that markets had expected. As the Ministry of Finance reported, the reading reflected that the decline registered in exports of basic metals and articles, in mineral products and in plastics and rubber more than offset growth in overseas sales for electronic products and chemicals.
Conversely, imports contracted a sharp 15.2% in January, which contrasted the 10.1% expansion registered in December. The reading marked the largest decline since September 2009 and was well below market expectations of a 7.5% contraction.
The trade balance recorded a USD 3.0 billion surplus in January. The print came in well above both the USD 0.5 billion surplus registered in the same month last year and market expectations of a USD 2.1 billion surplus. In the twelve months up to January, the trade balance surplus amounted to USD 37.8 billion (December: USD 35.4 billion).
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect exports to grow 5.4% in 2014 and 6.7% in 2015.