The trade deficit in France increased to EUR 5.69 billion in November of 2017 from an upwardly revised EUR 5.29 billion in October and well above market expectations of a EUR 4.7 billion gap. It is the highest trade shortfall since February as exports fell for the third straight month. Energy products, specially natural hydrocarbons accounted the most for the wider deficit, amid a sharp rise in supply, price growth and lower sales. A decline in shipments of autos and parts and clothing also weighed down on exports.
Exports went down 1.6 percent month-over-month to EUR 39.3 billion, following a 0.4 percent drop in October. Sales declined for hydrocarbons (-11.3 percent), namely natural gas to Lebanon and Spain and electricity; pharmaceuticals (-8.2 percent) to Switzerland, China and Belgium; aerospace industry (-6.2 percent), namely aircraft to Germany, the US and Asia and satellites to South Korea; refined oil (-4.5 percent) to the US, Belgium, Slovenia and Dominican Republic; autos and parts (-2.7 percent) to the EU, the US, South Korea, Argentina, Brazil and Thailand; clothing and textiles (-0.8 percent).
Imports declined 0.5 percent month-over-month to EUR 45 billion, reversing from a 0.8 percent rise in October. Biggest drops were seen in purchases of pharmaceuticals (-20.7 percent); works of art, technical documentation, publishing products (-7.2 percent); wood, paper, cardboard (-3.3 percent); autos (-2.9 percent); rubber products, plastics, various minerals (-2.8 percent) and chemicals (-2.8 percent). On the other hand, a rise in imports was recorded for natural hydrocarbons, mining products, electricity (18.1 percent), mainly due to higher oil prices; refined oil (4.4 percent); ships, trains, motorcycles (4.4 percent); textiles and clothing (3 percent), namely clothing from China and Bangladesh, and shoes from Vietnam and Indonesia.
1/9/2018 8:47:48 AM