9 Jan 2013

Australian trade deficit wider

8:30 am on 9 January 2013

Australia's trade deficit widened in November.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) said on Tuesday that the balance on goods and services was a deficit of $A2.637 billion in November seasonally adjusted, compared with a upwardly revised deficit of $US2.443 billion in October.

AAP reports that exports rose 1%, while imports rose 2% during the month.

The ABC reports rural goods exports were up around 2%, with wool and sheepskin exports up 10%.

Exports of non-rural goods also rose 2%, with metal ore and mineral exports up 6%, largely reflecting a recovery in iron ore prices, and the value of machinery shipped overseas rising 17%.

Tourism also posted a rise, with visitors to Australia worth $A2.88 billion in November, up 2% on the previous month.

There were falls in the value of coal and metal (excluding gold) exports.

The rise in imports was mainly driven by consumer goods, with a 3% rise to $A5.81 billion.

The ABC reports there was also a 9.5% rise in imports of cars, reflecting a record year for new car sales in 2012.