Exports declined 3.9 percent year-on-year to EUR 101.2 billion in August.
Sales to the EU dropped 3.3 percent to EUR 57.5 billion, of which Euro area (-3.7 percent to EUR 35.1 billion) and non-Euro area countries (-2.6 percent to EUR 22.4 billion). In addition, exports to countries outside the EU slumped 4.8 percent to EUR 43.7 billion.
Imports dropped 3.1 percent to EUR 85.0 billion.
Purchases from the EU decreased 2.7 percent to EUR 47.2 billion, of which Euro area (-3.8 percent to EUR 30.2 billion) and non-Euro area countries (-0.6 percent to EUR 17 billion). Also, arrivals from countries outside the EU fell 3.6 percent to EUR 37.8 billion.
Considering the first eight months of the year, the trade surplus narrowed to EUR 147.5 billion from EUR 156.4 billion in the corresponding period of 2018.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the trade surplus narrowed to EUR 18.1 billion in August from a revised EUR 20.5 billion in July, missing market consensus of EUR 19.1 billion. Exports dropped 1.8 percent, worse than expectations of a 1 percent decline; while imports advanced 0.5 percent, beating consensus of a 0.2 percent fall.