EU trade surplus hits $1.4bn as exports rise
Brussels, December 17, 2011
The euro zone had a slightly higher than expected trade surplus in October, non-adjusted data showed on Friday, but the bloc's performance was substantially weaker than a year ago.
European Union statistics office Eurostat said the surplus for the 17 countries using the euro was 1.1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) in October, against 3.1 billion in October 2010, with exports up six per cent and imports rising 7 per cent year-on-year.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected a trade surplus of 1 billion euros. Adjusted for seasonal swings, the euro zone trade balance in October was a surplus of 0.3 billion euros, down from a 2.2 billion euro surplus in September.
In the January-October period, the non-adjusted euro zone trade gap widened to 18.8 billion euros from 10.9 billion euros in the same period of 2010, as exports grew 13 per cent and imports rose 14 per cent.
For the 27-nation European Union, the trade deficit with China for the January to September period fell to 118 billion euros compared with 122.6 billion in the same period a year ago.