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Australia Posts Surprise Trade Deficit

Australia Posts Surprise Trade Deficit
3/8/2012 8:42 PM ET

Australia saw a seasonally adjusted merchandise trade deficit of A$673 million in January, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Friday.

That was sharply lower than forecasts for a surplus of A$1.5 billion following the surplus of A$1.709 billion in December.

Exports declined 8.0 percent on year to A$25.372 trillion, down 8 percent from A$27.651 trillion in the previous month.

Non-rural goods fell 6 percent or A$1.193 billion, while non-monetary gold plummeted 56 percent or A$1.070 billion and rural goods fell 5 percent or A$137 million.

Net exports of goods under merchanting surged 50 percent or A$3 million. Services credits jumped 3 percent or A$118 million.

Imports eased an annual 1.0 percent to A$26.045 trillion, down from A$26.326 trillion a month earlier.

Intermediate and other merchandise goods shed 5 percent or A$477 million and capital goods lost 1 percent or A$75 million.

Consumption goods climbed 3 percent or A$164 million and non-monetary gold jumped 6 percent or A$28 million. Services debits added 2 percent or A$79 million.

by RTT Staff Writer

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