Trade Balance in Korea
Korea - Trade Balance
Exports continue to dip in August
Merchandise exports plunged 13.6% year-on-year in August, sharper than the 11.0% drop recorded in July, totaling USD 44.2 billion in August (July: USD 46.1 billion). Meanwhile, merchandise imports fell 4.2% in August, compared to July’s 2.7% fall, and totaling USD 42.5 billion (July: USD 43.7 billion). The trade sector remains dejected by heightened external headwinds including a slowdown in global demand for tech products, trade protectionism and flagging prices for semiconductors, which are key exports of Korea.
The merchandise trade surplus narrowed considerably to USD 1.7 billion in August from USD 6.8 billion in the same month a year prior (July 2019: USD 2.4 billion surplus). Meanwhile, the 12-month moving sum of the trade balance narrowed to a USD 48.2 billion surplus in August from the USD 53.3 billion surplus in July.
Going forward, the outlook for Korea’s external sector looks likely to remain in a bad way as the recent escalation of the U.S.-China trade dispute and the South Korea-Japan trade spat should further depress foreign demand. That said, the recent depreciation of the won may provide some stimulus to the flagging sector.
FocusEconomics panelists expect merchandise exports to decline 2.4% and imports to decrease 5.3% in 2019, bringing the trade surplus to USD 83.7 billion. In 2020, exports are expected to increase 3.0% and imports to rise 3.9%, resulting in a trade surplus of USD 81.6 billion.
Korea - Trade Balance Data
|Trade Balance (USD billion)||44.0||47.2||90.3||89.2||95.2|
5 years of economic forecasts for more than 30 economic indicators.
Korea Trade Balance Chart
Source: Korea Customs Service and FocusEconomics calculations.
|Bond Yield||1.34||1.55 %||Sep 04|
|Exchange Rate||1,208||0.21 %||Sep 04|
|Stock Market||1,989||-0.40 %||Sep 04|
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October 1, 2019
The Bank of Korea’s forward-looking business confidence indicator for manufacturers ticked up to 73 in October from 72 in September, while confidence in the non-manufacturing sector also increased to 74 points in October from 72 in the month prior.
October 1, 2019
Consumer prices increased 0.4% over the prior month in September, up from August’s 0.2% rise.
October 1, 2019
The IHS Markit manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) decreased to 48.0 in September from 49.0 in August, and thus remained below the 50-threshold that separates contraction from expansion in the manufacturing sector.
September 30, 2019
Industrial production decreased 2.9% year-on-year in August, contrasting July’s 0.6% rise.
September 26, 2019
The Bank of Korea’s composite consumer sentiment index recovered to 96.9 in September from 92.5 in August, likely due to a sharp fall in the seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate in August—the lowest since November 2013.