The UK trade deficit widened by GBP 0.97 billion to GBP 3.30 billion in October 2018 from an upwardly revised GBP 2.33 billion in the previous month. Imports rose 2.8 percent to GBP 56.68 billion and exports increased at a softer 1 percent to an all-time high of GBP 53.38 billion. Balance of Trade in the United Kingdom averaged -1415.27 GBP Million from 1955 until 2018, reaching an all time high of 2946 GBP Million in March of 1981 and a record low of -5749 GBP Million in October of 2013.

Balance of Trade in the United Kingdom is expected to be -1400.00 GBP Million by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Balance of Trade in the United Kingdom to stand at -2300.00 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the United Kingdom Balance of Trade is projected to trend around -1800.00 GBP Million in 2020, according to our econometric models.

United Kingdom Balance of Trade
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Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2018-09-10 08:30 AM Balance of Trade £-0.111B £-0.942B £-2.1B £-2.3B
2018-10-10 08:30 AM Balance of Trade £-1.274B £-0.572B £-1.15B £-1.8B
2018-11-09 09:30 AM Balance of Trade £-0.027B £-2.101B £ -1.1B
2018-12-10 09:30 AM Balance of Trade £-3.3B £-2.331B £-2.6B
2019-01-11 09:30 AM Balance of Trade £-3.3B £-2.2B
2019-02-08 09:30 AM Balance of Trade £ -1.4B
2019-03-08 09:30 AM Balance of Trade



UK Trade Deficit Widens in October



The UK trade deficit widened by GBP 0.97 billion to GBP 3.30 billion in October 2018 from an upwardly revised GBP 2.33 billion in the previous month.

Imports of goods and services to the UK rose 2.8 percent to GBP 56.68 billion in October from GBP 55.17 billion in the previous month. The increase was driven by a 3.5 percent jump in purchases of goods, such as machinery & transport equipment (5.4 percent), miscellaneous manufactures (4.5 percent), chemicals (7.7 percent), fuels (1.1 percent), material manufactures (5.1 percent), and food & live animals (2.6 percent). Imports of services went up 0.5 percent.

Among major trading partners, imports of goods from non-EU countries went up 6 percent, as purchases increased the most from China (9.3 percent), the US (11.3 percent), Norway (32.5 percent), Japan (5.9 percent), Russia (7.4 percent) and India (7.1 percent); while those from Turkey dropped 3.2 percent. In addition, imports from the EU increased 1.4 percent, mainly from Germany (7.7 percent), the Netherlands (0.6 percent), France (0.1 percent), Belgium (0.2 percent), Italy (4.3 percent) and Spain (2.1 percent). There was a decline in imports from Ireland (-8.5 percent) and Poland (-2 percent).

Meanwhile, exports of goods and services from the UK advanced at a softer 1 percent to an all-time high of GBP 53.38 billion in October from GBP 52.83 billion in the previous month, due to sales of services (1.3 percent) and goods (0.8 percent). Within goods commodities, increases were recorded in exports of chemicals (11.6 percent), miscellaneous manufactures (2.5 percent) and food & live animals (1.5 percent); while falls were seen in sales of machinery & transport equipment (-5.3 percent) and material manufactures (-0.4 percent).

Among major trading partners, exports of goods to the EU went up 3 percent, as sales increased mainly to Germany (4.2 percent), the Netherlands (12.5 percent), France (8.9 percent) and Ireland (1.4 percent); while there was a decline in exports to Belgium (-5.9 percent) and Italy (-0.4 percent). By contrast, sales to non-EU countries fell 1.1 percent, namely to Hong Kong (-10.6 percent), the UAE (-9.1 percent), Switzerland (-4.3 percent), Canada (-30.2 percent), Turkey (-17.7 percent) and Australia (-11.2 percent). Exports were higher to the US (13.1 percent), China (5.7 percent), Japan (8.2 percent), South Korea (14.6 percent) and India (3.2 percent).


ONS | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
12/10/2018 10:22:50 AM



United Kingdom Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade -3300.00 -2331.00 2946.00 -5749.00 GBP Million [+]
Current Account -20317.00 -15692.00 2654.00 -32163.00 GBP Million [+]
Current Account to GDP -4.10 -5.80 2.60 -5.80 percent [+]
Imports 56683.00 55165.00 57009.00 1031.00 GBP Million [+]
Exports 53383.00 52834.00 53383.00 962.00 GBP Million [+]
External Debt 6382913.00 6412914.00 6428718.00 565439.00 GBP Million [+]
Capital Flows 13843.00 3074.00 42878.00 -15043.00 GBP Million [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 22199.00 -3896.00 82539.00 -44536.00 GBP Million [+]
Gold Reserves 310.30 310.30 588.27 310.25 Tonnes [+]
Crude Oil Production 842.00 915.00 2821.00 1.00 BBL/D/1K [+]
Terrorism Index 5.10 5.08 5.68 4.19 [+]
Tourism Revenues 2008.00 2013.00 3014.00 126.00 GBP Million [+]
Tourist Arrivals 3234.00 3469.00 4043.00 540.00 Thousand [+]
Weapons Sales 1214.00 1365.00 6069.00 744.00 USD Million [+]

Exports by Country  |   Exports by Category  |   Imports by Country  |   Imports by Category



United Kingdom Balance of Trade

The UK's trade balance has been in deficit since 1998, due to deficits in trade in goods which are partly offset by surpluses in trade in services. The level of total UK trade in goods as a proportion of total trade in goods and services has been gradually declining since 1986 after peaking at 75 percent in 1985. This is consistent with the rising share of UK trade in services (35 percent of total trade in 2017). In 2017, the biggest goods deficits were recorded with Germany, China, the Netherlands, Norway, Belgium & Luxembourg and Italy; and the largest surpluses were recorded with the United States, Ireland and South Korea. This page provides - United Kingdom Balance of Trade - actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. United Kingdom Balance of Trade - actual data, historical chart and calendar of releases - was last updated on December of 2018.

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
-3300.00 -2331.00 2946.00 -5749.00 1955 - 2018 GBP Million Monthly




Country Last Previous
Argentina 277.00 Oct/18
Australia 2316.00 Oct/18
Brazil 4062.09 Nov/18
Canada -1165.20 Oct/18
China 447.40 Nov/18
Euro Area 13952.30 Oct/18
France -4052.00 Oct/18
Germany 18300.00 Oct/18
India -16670.00 Nov/18
Indonesia -2047.00 Nov/18
Italy 3784.00 Oct/18
Japan -449.26 Oct/18
Mexico -2936.00 Oct/18
Netherlands 4850.00 Oct/18
Russia 19697.00 Oct/18
Saudi Arabia 162782.00 Jun/18
Singapore 3799.41 Nov/18
South Africa -5549.90 Oct/18
South Korea 5139.00 Nov/18
Spain -3297100.00 Sep/18
Switzerland 2637.00 Oct/18
Turkey -456.10 Oct/18
United Kingdom -3300.00 Oct/18
United States -55488.00 Oct/18


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