Canada Unexpectedly Swings to Trade Surplus

Canada posted its first trade surplus in four months in October on rising shipments and higher prices for the nation’s gold and energy.

The surplus totaled C$428 million ($407 million) in October, following a revised deficit of C$850 million the previous month, as exports jumped 3.4 percent, Statistics Canada said.

Exports of precious metals, primarily gold, surged 34 percent to a record C$1.3 billion in October, while Canada also benefited from higher shipments of copper ores and other non- metallic minerals. Energy sales rose 6.5 percent to C$6.8 billion, mainly due to rising prices.

Export volumes increased 2.6 percent, while prices for goods sold abroad were up 0.8 percent during the month. Six of the seven export industries tracked by Statistics Canada posted gains, including a 2.9 percent rise for agricultural and fishing products and a 1.1 percent increase in automotive products.

Imports fell 0.8 percent, dropping for a third month, as prices for goods shipped abroad fell. Imports of machinery and equipment declined 4.4 percent, the agency said.

Canada’s trade surplus with the U.S., its largest trading partner, widened to C$3.41 billion in October from C$2.01 billion in September, Statistics Canada said.

The statistics agency had originally reported an overall trade deficit in September of C$927 million.

Canada Unexpectedly Swings to Trade Surplus, Bloomberg
12/10/2009 9:26:59 AM