Australia records trade deficit in August

Media release

3 October 2012

The Australian Bureau of Statistics today confirmed a seasonally-adjusted trade deficit of $2.0 billion in August 2012.

The increase in the August trade deficit was largely the result of a 3.3 per cent decline in export values, driven by a 5.7 per cent fall in non-rural commodity exports.

“Obviously commodity prices have declined in recent months and this was always going to affect the monthly trade figures.  Despite this, strong investment in the resources sector is already starting to deliver greater export volumes and this is set to continue,” Dr Emerson said.

The decline in non-rural commodity exports was partly offset by a 1.3 per cent increase in rural goods exports and a 1.2 per cent increase in service exports during August.

Import values fell by 1.3 per cent in August, driven by a decline in intermediate goods. This was partly offset by rises in imports of consumption goods and services, and capital imports.

“Over the last year, capital imports have grown by 17.7 per cent and this is supporting new investment, particularly in resources,” Dr Emerson said.

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