Record UK trade gap

The deficit on trade in goods widened to £8.7bn in July, which is the biggest monthly figure since this current series of measurement began in 1998. This deficit compares with one of £7.5bn in June according to figures published yesterday by the Office of National Statistics. The UK’s balance of trade on goods and services also widened from £3.6bn in … Continue reading

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G7 trade flows growing but at a slowing pace

Merchandise trade volumes for the G7 countries as a whole continued to grow in the first quarter of 2010, but at a slower pace than in the fourth quarter of 2009, according to statistics just released by the OECD.  Based on seasonally adjusted monthly data, merchandise trade values remain approximately 20% below pre-crisis levels in April and May.   G7 … Continue reading

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Survey suggests continued growth in UK economy

The latest Economic Survey from the British Chambers of Commerce suggests that there was continued growth in the second quarter of 0.6% to 0.7%. The survey, which is based on data collected from over 5,600 businesses throughout the country found that domestic manufacturing sales surged by 29 points in the second quarter to +30% and manufacturing export sales rose by … Continue reading

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Why has the UK trade deficit increased?

Is this more bad news? Let’s look at yesterday’s stark figures from the ONS. The UK’s trade deficit in goods and services widened from £2.2bn in February to £3.7bn in March. Although the trade in services remained in surplus to the tune of £3.8bn in March, this was down from the £4.1bn recorded in February. When it comes to the … Continue reading

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Recovery in OECD trade

The volume of merchandise trade of the G7 group of countries grew in the third quarter of 2009, after being largely stable in the previous quarter. In fact, exports from G7 countries grew by 5.0% quarter-on-quarter and imports rose by 4.1% in the third quarter. However, when we look at year-on-year figures, exports were down 17.5% and imports also fell … Continue reading

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Recession has ended, but only just.

Surprising figures just released by the ONS show that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) increased by 0.1% in the fourth quarter of 2009, compared with a decrease of 0.2% in the third quarter. This was put down to growth in both services and production.   However, this figure was quite surprising as most commentators were expecting a larger rise, even up … Continue reading

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UK trade gap narrows

The UK’s deficit on trade in goods and services fell from a deficit of £3.1bn in October to £2.9bn in November, according to figures published by the Office for National Statistics today.   There was a deficit on trade in goods of £6.8bn in November which was down from the £7.0bn recorded in October. The value of exports stayed at … Continue reading

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It was worse than we thought

Yesterday the ONS produced revised figures for GDP growth in the first quarter of 2009. Their original estimate had been that GDP fell by 1.9% but this has now been revised downwards to 2.4%. This was the biggest quarterly fall for 51 years.   It is reasonable that revisions have to be made retrospectively, but we are not used to … Continue reading

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Service with a smile?

We are just seeing the first signs that the service sector is moving back into growth. The CIPS/Markit UK Services Purchasing Managers Index for May was published yesterday. This index covers transport & communication, financial intermediation, business services, personal services, computing & IT and hotels & restaurants. Responses are calibrated as to whether purchasing managers are reporting an improvement, deterioration … Continue reading

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