Compared to the prior month, sales of goods and services increased by 2 percent to AUD 33.34 billion.
Rural goods rose 7 percent to AUD 4.14 billion, mainly due to a 10 percent increase of sugar, sugar preparations and honey and a 23 percent rise of wool and sheepskins.
Exports of non-rural goods (bulk commodities and non-bulk commodities) were little changed at AUD 21.0 billion, due to a 4 percent rise in metal ores and minerals and a 9 percent of other manufactures. Partly offsetting these rises were coal, coke and briquettes (-6 percent) and other non-rural, including sugar and beverages (-16 percent).
Non-monetary gold (gold which is not owned by monetary authorities and can be in the form of bullion, including coins, ingots or bar with a purity at least 995 parts per thousand) jumped 32 percent to AUD 1.85 billion.
Exports of services went up AUD 45 million ( 1 percent) to AUD 6.25 billion. The main component contributing to the rise was travel (1 percent).
Imports of goods and services in March jumped 5 percent to AUD 30.23 billion. Consumption goods rose the most by 10 percent to AUD 8.46 billion, followed by intermediate and other merchandise goods (8 percent, driven by a 22 percent rise in fuel and lubricants and a 15 percent rise in parts for transport equipments). Also, non-monetary gold rose 14 percent. In contrast, capital goods fell 4 percent, due to civil aircraft and confidentialised items (-43 percent) and telecommunications equipment (-7 percent).
Purchases of non-monetary gold rose AUD 68 million (14 percent) to AUD 568 million.
Imports of services rose AUD 6 million to AUD 6.2 billion. The main components contributing to the rise in seasonally adjusted estimates were: other services (1 percent) and transport (1 percent). Partly offsetting these rises was travel (-1 percent).
Considering January to March 2017, trade surplus was recorded at AUD 8.98 billion, an increase of 49 percent compared to the same period a year earlier.