Canada Trade Gap Narrows in February

Canada’s merchandise trade deficit narrowed to CAD 2.90 billion in February 2019 from a downwardly revised CAD 3.09 billion in the previous month and compared with market expectations of a CAD 3.5 billion shortfall. Imports declined 1.6 percent month-over-month, led by lower purchases of gold and exports dropped 1.3 percent on lower sales of non-energy products.

Imports fell 1.6 percent to CAD 50.9 billion in February. Purchases of metal and non-metallic mineral products dropped 7.7 percent, driven by gold. Also, purchased decreased for electronic and electrical equipment and parts (3.8 percent to CAD 5.8 billion); computers and computer peripherals (-9.5 percent), namely laptops from the US and China; industrial machinery, equipment and parts (-3.5 percent); consumer goods (-1.9 percent) and motor vehicles and parts (-1.9 percent). On the other hand, imports of aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts rose 6.3 percent to CAD 2.8 billion, boosted by aircraft, which posted a record high.

Imports from the US advanced 1.2 percent to CAD 32.8 billion, in part due to higher purchases of aircraft. Imports from countries other than the US went down 6.3 percent to CAD 18.1 billion, including China (various products), Mexico (autos), Germany (autos) and the UK (aircraft and parts, energy products).

Exports decreased 1.3 percent to CAD 48.0 billion. Sales fell for all non-energy product sections, mostly metal and non-metallic mineral products (-6.6 percent to CAD 5.2 billion), due to lower exports of refined gold to the UK and gold transfers within the banking sector. Additionally, exports of metal ores and non-metallic minerals dropped 11.0 percent to CAD 1.7 billion. Also, sales declined for motor vehicles and parts (-2.8 percent), mainly passenger cars and light trucks. Meanwhile, sales of energy products increased 11.7 percent to CAD 9.3 billion, mostly driven by crude oil (+8.5 percent) and  natural gas (+46.2 percent). Excluding energy products, exports fell 4.0 percent.

Exports to the US went up 3.5 percent to CAD 36.3 billion, primarily on higher sales of crude oil. Exports to countries other than the US fell 14.0 percent to CAD 11.7 billion, the lowest level since February last year. Widespread decreases were led by lower exports to the UK (gold), Saudi Arabia (other transportation equipment), Japan (canola and other crop products) and the Netherlands (iron ores, crude oil and coal).

Canada Trade Gap Narrows in February

Statistics Canada | Stefanie Moya |
4/17/2019 1:03:31 PM