Rise in UK Exports Narrows October Trade Deficit

12 December 2016


The UK trade deficit in goods and services narrowed significantly to £2 bn in October as exports rose, according to latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Exports rose by £2 bn, lifted by machinery and transport orders, while imports fell by £1.8bn, defying warnings that June’s BREXIT vote would herald a sharp UK export slowdown to the Eurozone.

The overall October deficit on trade in goods was £9.7bn, narrowing by £4.1bn on September, based on a £2.1bn increase in exports to £26.8bn and a £2.0bn fall in imports to £36.5bn.

However, the latest ONS figures mean that between the three months to July 2016 and the three months to October 2016, the total trade deficit for goods and services widened by £4.7bn to £13.2bn.

In this period, the overall deficit on trade in goods widened by £6.2bn to £37.0bn. Exports rose by £1.6bn (2.0%) and imports rose by £7.7bn (7.3%). The UK’s trade in goods deficit with the EU widened by £1.9bn to £24.5bn and its trade in goods deficit with countries outside the EU widened by £4.3bn to £12.5bn, attributed to an increase in exports (2.1%) and an increase in imports (10.9%).

Meanwhile, the trade in services surplus widened by £1.4bn to £23.8bn, as exports increased by £0.9bn and imports decreased by £0.6bn.


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