Canada Trade Deficit Narrows in April

Canada's merchandise trade deficit narrowed to CAD 1.9 billion in April of 2018 from a downwardly revised CAD 3.9 billion in March and well below market expectations of a CAD 3.4 billion gap. Exports increased 1.6 percent, boosted by higher sales of metal and non-metallic mineral products, consumer goods and energy products. Meantime, imports declined 2.5 percent, after reaching a record high in March, mainly due to lower purchases of motor vehicles and parts and consumer goods.

Total exports advanced 1.6 percent month-over-month to a record high CAD 48.6 billion in April. Sales went up mostly due to metal and non-metallic mineral products (+9.1 percent to CAD 5.8 billion), namely unwrought precious metals and precious metal alloys unwrought gold to Hong Kong. Also, exports of consumer goods increased 5.4 percent to CAD 6.2 billion and sales of pharmaceutical and medicinal products rose 33.3 percent, mostly  due to higher shipments to the United States. In addition, sales increased for other food (+8.3 percent), mainly higher exports of dried peas to Asia; energy products (+2.3 percent) due to crude oil and crude bitumen (+4.9 percent). 

Exports to the United States were up 3.2 percent, due to higher sales of crude oil and crude oil bitumen. Exports to countries other than the US decreased 3.0 percent, mostly on lower shipments to the UK (crude oil), Saudi Arabia (other transportation equipment), Japan (coal) and South Korea (aircraft and coal).

Imports dropped 2.5 percent to CAD 50.5 billion in April, after reaching a record high in March. The biggest contribution for the decline was given by motor vehicles and parts (-5.8 percent to CAD 9.7 billion), as passenger cars and light trucks fell 8.9 percent, returning to normal levels following higher light trucks import levels in March and motor vehicle engines and motor vehicle parts (-4.4 percent). Additionally, purchases decreased for consumer goods (-4.9 percent to CAD 10.5 billion), namely pharmaceutical and medicinal products mostly on lower imports from Switzerland, Belgium and the United States. On the other hand, imports picked up for energy (+8.5 percent to CAD 3.4 billion), mostly refined petroleum energy products (+28.5 percent to a record CAD 1.4 billion). Temporary shutdowns in Canadian refineries in April led to higher imports of motor gasoline and diesel fuel to meet domestic demand. 

Imports from the US edged down 1.4 percent, dragged by lower purchases of passenger cars and light trucks. Imports from countries other than the US went down 4.3 percent, mainly on lower imports from China (computers).

Canada Trade Deficit Narrows in April

Statistics Canada | Stefanie Moya |
6/6/2018 1:10:52 PM