NZ: Merchandise trade

November 24, 2016 03:45 CST

Actual Previous
Merchandise trade Balance - level NZ$-846M NZ$-1436M
Exports - M/M percent change 9.3% 2.6%
Exports - Y/Y percent change 8.1% -5.7%
Imports - M/M percent change 2.1% 6.0%
Imports - Y/Y percent change 5.7% 1.8%

New Zealand's merchandise trade balance deficit fell from NZ$1436 million in September to NZ$846 million in October. Seasonally adjusted exports rose 9.3 percent on the month and 8.1 percent year-on-year. Seasonally adjusted imports rose 2.1 percent on the month and 5.7 percent year-on-year. More details to follow.

The international trade balance measures the difference between imports and exports of both tangible goods and services. Imports may act as a drag on domestic growth and they may also increase competitive pressures on domestic producers. Exports boost domestic production. Trade balance values are calculated by deducting imports (cif) from exports (fob).

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 the value of the NZ dollar in the foreign exchange market. Imports indicate demand for foreign goods in New Zealand. Exports show the demand for NZ goods in countries overseas. The currency can be sensitive to changes in the trade deficit run by New Zealand since this trade imbalance creates greater demand for foreign currencies. The bond market is also sensitive to the risk of importing inflation.