Exports increased by 1 percent from a month earlier to an all-time high of AUD 38.05 billion in October, mainly driven by sales of non-rural goods (4 percent to AUD 24.73 billion), in particular coal, coke and briquettes (12 percent), other mineral fuels (4 percent), other manufactures (8 percent), and metals (3 percent). Meanwhile, exports of rural goods went down 7 percent to AUD 3.88 billion, in particular meat and meat preparations (-3 percent), wool & sheepskins -(14 percent), cereal grains and cereal preparations (-15 percent), and other rural (-5 percent). Also, exports of non-monetary gold tumbled 24 percent to AUD 1.14 billion. Additionally, exports of services went up 1 percent to AUD 8.26 billion, boosted by travel (2 percent).
Meanwhile, imports jumped 3 percent to a record AUD 35.73 billion in October. Purchases of intermediate and other merchandise goods soared 5 percent to AUD 11.84 billion, boosted by fuels and lubricants (11 percent); other parts for capital goods (6 percent); and processed industrial supplies n.e.s. (2 percent). Also, imports of capital good jumped 8 percent to AUD 6.64 billion, driven by telecommunications equipment (13 percent); machinery and industrial equipment (6 percent); civil aircraft and confidentialised items (26 percent); and ADP equipment (9 percent). In addition, purchases of consumption goods went up 1 percent to AUD 8.80 billion, driven by textiles, clothing and footwear (5 percent); and consumption goods n.e.s. (2 percent). Meantime, purchases of non-monetary gold dropped 7 percent to AUD 333 million. Also, imports of services were almost unchanged at AUD 8.12 billion.
Considering the first ten months of the year, the trade surplus widened sharply to AUD 17.62 billion from AUD 11.80 billion in the same period of 2017.