IN: Merchandise Trade Balance

Mon Aug 14 07:00:00 CDT 2017

Actual Previous
Balance $-11.45B $-13.0B
Exports Y/Y 3.94% 4.4%
Imports Y/Y 15.42% 19.0%

India's merchandise trade deficit narrowed from $13.0 billion in June to $11.45 billion in July. This is the smallest deficit since March but is well above the deficit of $7.8 billion recorded in July 2016

Exports grew 3.94 percent on the year in July, moderating from an increase of 4.4 percent in June. Meanwhile, year-on-year growth in imports slowed from 19.0 percent in June to 15.42 percent in July, with oil imports up 15.02 percent on the year.

Seperate data also released today showed services trade data for June. Services trade data are released a month after the equivalent merchandise trade data. Services exports fell 0.31 percent on the year in June while services imports fell 2.07 percent. This resulted in a services trade surplus of $5.93 billion.

The merchandise trade balance measures the difference between imports and exports of goods. The level of the international trade balance, as well as changes in exports and imports, indicate trends in foreign trade and can offer a guide to an economy's competitiveness. Alongside the merchandise data, exports and imports of services are also provided. The statistics, which are not seasonally adjusted, are reported in both local currency and U.S. dollars, the latter being the main market focus.

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.