South Korea Posts Largest Trade Surplus on Record in September


South Korea's trade surplus jumped to USD 13.8 billion in September of 2017 from USD 6.9 billion in the same month a year earlier, mainly supported by double-digit growth of exports, preliminary data showed.

Year-on-year, sales surged 35 percent to USD 55.1 billion, following a downwardly revised 17.3 percent rise in the prior month and beating consensus of a 21.6 percent growth. It was the ninth straight month of double-digit growth in outbound shipments, marking the largest monthly total in South Korean history, eclipsing the earlier record of USD 51.6 billion in October 2014. Exports of semiconductors posted record sales of USD 9.69 billion. It was the first time that monthly outbound shipment of computer chips topped the USD 9 billion. Meantime, sales of steel products more than doubled to reach a fresh record high of USD 4.67 billion.
 
Exports to China soared 23.4 percent from a year earlier, the longest stretch of sales to South Korea's bigger neighbour since 2014. In addition, sales to the US jumped by 28.9 percent and those to the EU jumped by 23 percent. Meanwhile, exports to Japan jumped by 16 percent, led by a rise in shipments of steeal and autoparts

Imports soared by 21.7 percent to USD 41.4 billion, compared to an upwardly revised 15.3 percent gain in a month earlier while market estimated a 18.2 percent increase.
 
In August 2017, trade surplus was downwardly revised to 6.6 USD billion. For the July-September period, sales jumped 24% to USD 151 billion, the largest since the first quarter 2011.
 
For 2017, exports are projected to rise 2.9 percent, supported by improving global demand, while imports are expected to grow by 7.2 percent. The trade balance has been in consistent surpluses since February 2012.
 
 

Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy l Chusnul Ch Manan | chusnul@tradingeconomics.com
10/1/2017 3:19:52 AM