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Summary: UK Trade, November 2013

Released: 09 January 2014 Download PDF

Figure 1: Balance of UK Trade

Figure 1: Balance of UK Trade
Source: Office for National Statistics

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The deficit of trade in goods and services for November 2013 was £3.2 billion, compared with a deficit of £3.5 billion in the previous month.

The deficit on trade in goods was £9.4 billion in November 2013.  The trade position reflects exports minus imports. Exports of goods increased by 2.0% between October and November 2013 to £25.3 billion. Imports for the same period rose by 0.8% to £34.8 billion.

In November 2013, exports of goods to the European Union (EU) increased by £0.6 billion to £12.8 billion reflecting an increase in the export of chemicals of £0.4 billion.  Imports from the EU increased by £0.5 billion to £19.2 billion, a record high attributed mainly to cars.

In November 2013, exports of goods to countries outside of the EU decreased by £0.1 billion to £12.6 billion.  Imports decreased by £0.2 billion to £15.6 billion.

Trade statistics for any one month can be erratic.  For that reason, it is recommended to compare the latest three months against the preceding three months and the same three months of 2012.

The deficit on trade in goods increased by £1.8 billion to £29.2 billion in the three months to November 2013, when compared with the previous three months.  Exports of goods in the three months to November 2013 decreased by 3.0% to £75.2 billion, but were 1.5% higher when compared with the same three months in 2012.  Imports of goods decreased by 0.6% in the three months to November 2013 to £104.4 billion, but were 2.2% higher when compared with the same three months in 2012.

Exports to countries within the EU decreased by 5.2% to £37.5 billion in the three months to November 2013 reflecting a fall in oil exports of £1.7 billion.  Exports to countries outside the EU fell by 0.7% to £37.7 billion in the same period. Imports from EU countries increased 2.8% in the three months to November 2013 and were 7.2% higher than in the same three months in 2012.  Imports from countries outside of the EU decreased by 4.3% in the latest three months and were 3.1% lower compared with the same three months in 2012.

In the three months to November 2013 exports to China increased 9.6% to £3.3 billion and imports from China increased 1.7% to £8.6 billion, both record highs.

This bulletin also reports on trade in services.  However, the information on trade in services is mainly obtained from quarterly surveys, in some cases underpinned by larger annual surveys. That means that the data for the latest months are inevitably uncertain.

Source: Office for National Statistics

Background notes

  1. Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/assessment/code-of-practice/index.html or from the Media Relations Office email: media.relations@ons.gsi.gov.uk

    These National Statistics are produced to high professional standards and released according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.

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