Monday, October 10, 2011

August 2011 External Trade: Flat

Almost lost in the shuffle due to the budget announcement on Friday, August’s trade numbers don’t provide much grounds for optimism that GDP growth in the second half would meet the government’s forecasts (log annual and monthly changes; seasonally adjusted):


Having said that, seasonally adjusted exports did turn up on a monthly basis, even if the unadjusted series showed a slight contraction. That may be grasping at straws, though if we factor in Ramadhan as well, exports were probably higher than they had a right to be.

The downturn in exports of E&E products is showing signs of levelling off (finally), and exports of other goods were also positive (log annual and monthly changes; seasonally adjusted):


Given the softening in export prices, so far so good – growth here implies a pickup in volumes as well. In fact, exports of other goods is sustaining at near all time highs (RM millions; seasonally adjusted):


Next month’s forecasts suggest more of the same, which implies little q-o-q GDP growth between 3Q and 2Q. The year on year numbers might flatter to deceive though as last year’s 3Q GDP numbers were pretty awful:

Seasonally adjusted model


Point forecast:RM55,393m (15.7% yoy, -3.1% mom)

Range forecast:RM62,329m-48,456m

Seasonal difference model


Point forecast:RM58,913m (16.7% yoy, 0.6% mom)

Range forecast:RM67,235m-50,592m

Technical Notes:

August 2011 External Trade Report from MATRADE.

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