China says a decline exports and imports, missing anticipations

August 9, 2023: On Tuesday, China said that exports decreased by 14.5% in July from a year ago, while imports dropped by 12.4% in U.S. dollar terms.

That’s worse than what analysts had expected.

A Reuters poll indicated a 12.5% decline in exports in July from a year ago in U.S. dollar terms. According to the survey, imports were expected to have dropped by 5% during that time.

Customs data showed that China’s exports to the U.S. dropped 23.1% year-on-year in July, while those to the European Union decreased by 20.6%. Association of Southeast Asian Nations decreased by 21.4%, according to the data.

The data showed that China’s imports from Russia decreased by 8.1% in July from a year ago.

A slowdown in the development of the U.S. and other major economies has dragged down Chinese exports this year. Meanwhile, China’s domestic demand has remained lackluster.

Chinese crude oil imports dropped by 20.8% in July from a year ago, while imports of integrated circuits dropped by nearly 17%.

July’s plunge in trade adds to recent weakness in China’s exports and imports.

On a year-to-date basis, China’s exports for the rather seven months fell by 5% from a year ago, while imports dropped by 7.6%.

Among the few higher-value export categories that significantly increased in the year’s first seven months were cars, refined oil and bags, suitcases, and similar cases.

For imports, paper pulp, coal products, and edible vegetable oil were among the categories that saw significant growth from a year ago in the January to July period.

Exports remain essential to China’s general economic activity, although its share has fallen recently.

An official measure of Chinese manufacturing training posted a fourth-straight month of squeeze in July.

A similar survey from Caixin for July noticed that manufacturers’ new export business has acquired rapidly since September 2022.

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