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Canada's trade deficit at $3.3 billion for the month of May

July 6, 2016

Statistics Canada announced that the country's merchandise trade deficit with the world in May was virtually unchanged compared with April at $3.3 billion.

According to the federal agency total exports decreased 0.7% to $41.1 billion, as 8 of 11 sections declined in May. Lower exports of metal and non-metallic mineral products; industrial machinery, equipment and parts; and farm, fishing and intermediate food products were partially offset by higher exports of energy products.

Total imports fell 0.8% to $44.4 billion in May, despite gains in 6 of 11 sections. Lower imports of aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts; metal ores and non-metallic minerals; and metal and non-metallic mineral products were largely responsible for the decline. Partially offsetting these decreases were higher imports of energy products, and basic and industrial chemical, plastic and rubber products.

On the bright side, exports to the United States were up 3.6% to $32.1 billion and imports were down 1.1% to $29.3 billion. As a result, Canada's trade surplus with the United States rebounded from a low of $1.3 billion in April to $2.8 billion in May.

However, Canada's trade deficit with countries other than the United States widened from $4.6 billion in April to a record $6.0 billion in May. Exports to those countries decreased 13.6% to $9.1 billion in May. There were lower exports to the United Kingdom (-$723 million), to countries other than Canada's principal trading partners (-$164 million) and to China (-$160 million). Imports from countries other than the United States edged down 0.1% to $15.1 billion in May. Lower imports from Japan (-$196 million) and Peru (-$152 million) were partially offset by higher imports from the United Kingdom (+$164 million).

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