U.K. February Trade Deficit Narrows


The U.K. trade deficit narrowed more than economists forecast in February as exports jumped the most in seven years on record sales of chemicals.

The goods-trade gap was 6.2 billion pounds ($9.5 billion), the least since June 2006, the Office for National Statistics said today in London. Exports surged 9.5 percent, while imports fell 0.1 percent.

The trade deficit narrowed as all categories of commodity exports increased apart from non-chemical, semi-manufactured goods. Chemicals and oil led the gain on the month, the statistics office said.

Britain’s trade deficit with non-European Union countries narrowed to 3.3 billion pounds in February, the statistics office said. The gap with European Union nations also shrank, reaching 2.8 billion pounds.

U.K. manufacturing output jumped in February by twice as much as economists forecast, rebounding from a drop the previous month when the country was afflicted by its worst cold snap since 1979.

The sharp jump in exports in February suggests that they were held back significantly in January by the bad weather stopping the transportation of some goods overseas,” IHS Global Insight’s Archer said.


TradingEconomics.com, Bloomberg
4/13/2010 10:08:18 AM