Australia Trade Surplus Larger than Expected


Australia's trade surplus widened to AUD 1.60 billion in August 2018 from a marginally revised AUD 1.55 billion in the previous month, above market consensus of a AUD 1.40 billion surplus. Exports rose 1 percent to a near record while imports were virtually unchanged at an all-time high.

Exports increased by 1 percent from a month earlier to a near record high of AUD 36.56 billion in August, mainly driven by sales of rural goods (3 percent to AUD 4.20 billion), in particular other rural (7 percent), meat & meat preparations (6 percent), and wool & sheepskins (5 percent). Also, exports of non-monetary gold soared 13 percent to AUD 2.02 billion, while sales of non-rural goods dropped 1 percent to AUD 22.71 billion dragged by a decline in shipments of metals (-14 percent), metal ores & minerals (-3 percent), coal, coke & briquettes (-2 percent), and machinery (-3 percent). Exports of services went up 1 percent to AUD 7.61 billion, boosted by travel (1 percent) and other services (1 percent).

Meanwhile, imports were virtually unchanged at an all-time high of AUD 34.96 billion in August. Purchases of consumption goods were flat at AUD 8.64 billion, as an increase in food & beverages (3 percent), non-industrial transport equipment (2 percent) and textiles, clothing & footwear (1 percent) offset a decline in toys, books & leisure goods (-5 percent) and household electrical items (-5 percent). Meanwhile, imports of capital goods grew 9 percent to AUD 6.77 billion, led by civil aircraft & confidentialised items (169 percent), telecommunications equipment (12 percent), ADP equipment (6 percent), and machinery & industrial equipment (3 percent). Arrivals of intermediate & other merchandise goods fell 2 percent to AUD 11.04 billion, due to a drop in fuels & lubricants (-11 percent), iron & steel (-24 percent) and parts for transport equipment (-2 percent). Imports of services increased 1 percent to AUD 8.09 billion, led by travel (2 percent), transport (1 percent) and other services (1 percent).

Considering the first eight months of the year, the trade surplus narrowed to AUD 10.46 billion from AUD 10.86 billion in the same period of 2017.


Australia Trade Surplus Larger than Expected


ABS | Rida | rida@tradingeconomics.com
10/4/2018 9:22:52 AM