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Economy in Brief

Euro Area Export Trends are Lagging
by Robert Brusca August 22, 2008

Import growth in the Euro Area is still firm while export growth is fading. Import growth is of course is supported by strength in oil imports, much of that on the price side. For manufactured goods both exports and imports are weak over 12 months with imports falling by 1.8% and exports up by a scant 0.8%.

The accompanying chart tells the story of the trends with trade deficits posted in five of the past seven months. Europe is slowing down. Europe’s exports are slowing down. It’s a strong euro, weak domestic growth and a weakening global economy at work that is producing these results.

Euro Area 15-Trade Trends for Goods
  m/m% % Saar
  Jun-08 May-08 3M 6M 12M 12M Ago
Balance* €€ (2,954) €€ (1,035) €€ (861) €€ (440) €€ 1,543 €€ (1,610)
Exports
All exports 1.4% -4.7% 8.5% 11.3% 4.2% 10.1%
Food and drinks -0.4% -0.7% 8.5% 13.5% 9.5% 11.4%
Raw materials 2.4% -1.1% 23.4% 31.3% 10.4% 11.1%
Other 1.5% -5.1% 8.2% 10.7% 3.7% 9.9%
MFG 1.1% -3.8% 6.9% 11.2% 0.8% 13.3%
Imports
All imports 2.9% -3.0% 14.8% 14.1% 10.6% 3.8%
Food and drinks 0.6% 0.2% 7.9% -2.1% 8.3% 7.4%
Raw materials -1.1% 1.2% 1.2% 6.7% 2.3% 15.5%
Other 3.2% -3.3% 16.0% 15.6% 11.2% 3.0%
MFG 0.3% -1.3% -0.3% 3.8% -1.7% 9.9%
*Millions of Euros; mo or period average    
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