April Trade Deteriorates From March: Exports Up, Imports Down

Quick summary: less volatility than March, imports down more than forecast, several key commodities moving in the wrong direction.
Bloomberg: China Exports Rise for Second Month as Overseas Demand Continues
Overseas shipments rose 4.1 percent in yuan terms from a year earlier, after a March jump of 18.7 percent. Imports extended a streak of declines to 18 months, slumping 5.7 percent, to leave a trade surplus of 298 billion yuan.
Both figures were lower than consensus estimates, but exports slightly (4.3 percent increase expected) and imports by a lot (0.3 percent increase expected).

Export growth was strong in steel (7.6 percent) and coal (161 percent) volumes, with the large spike in coal volume also lifting the value of coal exports this year. Coal coke volumes were up solidly as well. Mining equipment imports increased more than 30 percent.

Imports of steel and coal are down for the year. Auto imports by volume were down 20 percent, ahead of the now YTD drop of 17.2 percent. Oil import volume was up, but at 7.5 percent down from the YTD growth rate.

The slowdown in trade with the U.S. year to date: exports down 3.5 percent, imports down 8.2 percent.

Source: China Customs

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