Canadian trade deficit widens to $2.1 billion in November

Tuesday, 08 January 2019 01:21:13 (GMT+3)   |   San Diego
       

According to Statistics Canada, Canadian exports fell 2.9 percent in November, mainly on lower crude oil exports, while imports decreased 0.5 percent. As a result, Canada's merchandise trade deficit with the world widened from $851 million in October to $2.1 billion in November.

Total exports fell 2.9 percent to $48.3 billion in November, a fourth consecutive monthly decline. Export volumes were down 1.8 percent while prices fell 1.1 percent. Exports were down in 8 of 11 sections in November and, as was the case in October, energy products contributed the most to the decline. Exports excluding energy products decreased 1.4 percent.

Following a 6.7 percent decline in October, exports of energy products fell 9.2 percent to $8.4 billion in November. Crude oil exports (-17.7 percent) led the decrease, driven by a 13.9 percent drop in prices, which were down for a third consecutive month. Crude oil export volumes were down 4.4 percent in November. Lower exports of crude oil were partially offset by higher exports of coal to South Korea, China and Viet Nam.

Total imports declined 0.5 percent to $50.4 billion in November. Imports were down in 7 of 11 product sections, led by motor vehicles and parts. Import volumes fell 0.3 percent and prices edged down 0.1 percent. Year over year, total nominal imports were up 2.4 percent.

Imports of motor vehicles and parts decreased 2.8 percent to $8.9 billion in November. Lower imports of passenger cars and light trucks, which fell 5.5 percent to $3.7 billion, were mainly responsible for the decline in November. This was the 9th decrease in 12 months, with imports of passenger cars and light trucks down 13.9 percent compared with November 2017. This decrease coincided with lower demand for new motor vehicles in Canada in recent months.

Imports of metal ores and non-metallic minerals fell 18.6 percent to $1.1 billion in November. Following a record high in September, imports of other metal ores and concentrates (-19.6 percent) were down for a second consecutive month in November, mainly on lower imports of gold for refining from the United States.

The overall decrease in November was largely offset by higher imports of aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts, which rose 21.2 percent to $2.1 billion. After reaching a five-year low in the third quarter of 2018, mainly due to a temporary slowdown in aircraft production in the United States, aircraft imports were up for a third consecutive month in November, mainly on the strength of higher imports of airliners.

Exports to the United States fell 3.9 percent in November to $35.3 billion, mostly due to lower crude oil exports. Imports were down 0.3 percent to $33.2 billion. As a result, Canada's trade surplus with the United States narrowed from $3.5 billion in October to $2.2 billion in November, the smallest surplus since September 2017. Comparing the average monthly exchange rates, the Canadian dollar lost 1.1 US cents relative to the American dollar from October to November.

Imports from countries other than the United States fell 0.8 percent to $17.2 billion in November, a third consecutive monthly decline. Lower imports from Russia (crude oil), Switzerland (copper) and Mexico (passenger cars and light trucks) were partially offset by higher imports from China (computers) and Japan (gold and passenger cars).

Exports to countries other than the United States edged up 0.1 percent to $13.0 billion. A sharp increase in exports to the United Kingdom (gold) was almost entirely offset by lower exports to Hong Kong (gold), the Netherlands (iron ore and heavy fuel oil) and China (gold). As a result, Canada's trade deficit with countries other than the United States narrowed from $4.4 billion in October to $4.2 billion in November, the smallest deficit since December 2016.


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