IN: Merchandise Trade Balance

July 15, 2016 07:00 CDT

Actual Previous
Balance $-8.12B $-6.27B
Exports Y/Y 1.27% -0.79%
Imports Y/Y -7.33% -13.16%

June's merchandise trade balance was in an $8.12 billion deficit, up from $6.27 billion in May.

Annual growth of exports finally moved back into positive figures at 1.27 percent, although for the second quarter as a whole, it remained negative at minus 2.07 percent. June non-petroleum exports were up 3.06 percent. At the same time, imports picked up from a minus 13.16 percent yearly rate in May to minus 7.33 percent.

The foreign trade data relate to total sea, air and land trade and on private and government accounts. Exports are on f.o.b. basis and imports are on c.i.f. basis. Exports include re-exports of foreign merchandise previously imported to India and imports relate to foreign merchandise whether intended for home consumption, bonding or re-exportation. Direct transit trade, transshipment trade, passengers baggage, ship's stores, defense goods and transactions in treasure i.e. gold and current coins and notes, diplomatic goods and "proscribed substances" under Atomic Energy Act, 1962, are excluded from the trade data, while indirect transit trade, transactions in silver (other than current coins) and in notes and coins not yet in circulation or withdrawn from circulation are included.

Changes in the level of imports and exports, along with the difference between the two (the trade balance) are a valuable gauge of economic trends here and abroad. While these trade figures can directly impact all financial markets, they primarily affect currency values in foreign exchange markets.

Imports indicate demand for foreign goods and services in India. Exports show the demand for Indian goods in countries overseas. The rupee can be particularly sensitive to changes in the trade deficit run by India, since the trade imbalance creates greater demand for foreign currencies. The bond market is also sensitive to the risk of importing inflation. Data are reported in US dollars and Indian rupees.