The surplus shrank to A$1.89 billion ($1.7 billion) from a revised A$3.44 billion in June, the Bureau of Statistics said in a report in Sydney today.
The weaker trade balance may help cool an economy that expanded last quarter by the most in three years as a record mining industry investment boom spills over into higher spending by households, which account for more than half of gross domestic product. Central bank Governor Glenn Stevens boosted borrowing costs six times from October to May to prevent inflation pressures building.
Exports fell 4 percent to A$25.4 billion in July, today’s report showed. Shipments of coal dropped 16 percent and iron ore declined 7 percent.
Imports rose 2 percent to A$23.5 billion in July. The gain included six Super Hornet fighter jets purchased by the Department of Defense.