Sharechat Logo

NZ's seasonally adjusted January deficit $791m versus an expected $300m deficit

Wednesday 27th February 2019

Text too small?

New Zealand recorded its highest January deficit on record and the seasonally adjusted deficit was also more than double what economists had been expecting as a fall in exports outstripped their forecasts.

The January trade deficit was a seasonally adjusted $791 million, as exports fell 7.8 percent on the year to $4.65 billion and imports lifted 0.4 percent to $5.44 billion, Stats NZ said. 

Economists had been expecting a $300 million deficit in January, with exports tipped to be $4.8 billion and imports seen at $5.05 billion, according to a Bloomberg poll.  

In actual terms, the deficit was $914 million, surpassing the previous record of $894 million in January 2006. Stats NZ noted, however, that as two-way goods trade has nearly doubled since then the January 2019 deficit is equal to 9.0 percent of two-way trade compared with 17 percent in 2006. 

In actual terms imports rose 7.7 percent to $5.3 billion while exports rose 3.0 percent to $4.4 billion. 

Stats NZ said the increase in imports was spread across a range of commodities, with petroleum and products leading the rise – up $81 million, or 13 percent on the year.  

The lift in exports, meanwhile, was led by milk powder, butter, and cheese – up $167 million to $1.5 billion. Exports of milk powder, butter and cheese to China rose $9.1 million from January 2018, to reach $200 million.

The largest fall in exports was for meat and edible offal, down $66 million in January 2019 from January 2018. Lamb exports were down $26 million, while beef exports fell $28 million.

Exports of lamb to the EU were at their lowest January value since 2006, it said. 

The annual deficit was $6.36 billion versus an annual deficit of $6.11 billion in the prior year. Economists had expected a deficit of $5.5 billion, according to the poll. 


  General Finance Advertising    

Comments from our readers

No comments yet

Add your comment:
Your name:
Your email:
Not displayed to the public
Comments to Sharechat go through an approval process. Comments which are defamatory, abusive or in some way deemed inappropriate will not be approved. It is allowable to use some form of non-de-plume for your name, however we recommend real email addresses are used. Comments from free email addresses such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc may not be approved.

Related News:

MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares rise; trading quiet ahead of upcoming earnings
NZ dollar firms against the Aussie heading into federal election
Fletcher-commissioned Deloitte report shows building material costs are low
RBNZ censures ANZ, prescribes risk capital calculation
RBNZ censures ANZ, prescribes risk capital calculation
SeaDragon shareholders back $4M injection to stave off liquidation
SeaDragon shareholders back $4M injection to stave off liquidation
Businesses get some reprieve in March quarter on cheaper prices
NZ manufacturing activity expands on month in April but down on year
Xero's CEO says it still has a cautious future in the US

IRG See IRG research reports