Friday, February 08, 2013

German Trade Statistics Indicates Euro Area Rebalancing

Today's trade numbers from Germany shows that its external surpluses continues to rise, with its trade surplus in goods rising from €159 billion in 2011 to €188 billion in 2012 and its overall current account surplus rising from €147 billion to €167 billion.

However, even as its overall trade surplus rose by €29 billion, its trade surplus with other euro area countries fell by €12 billion, from €19 billion to just €7 billion. In the last few months of 2012, Germany actually had a deficit with the rest of the euro area.  No subdivision of euro area countries is available, at least not yet, but it seems safe to say that the bulk of this drop was with Southern European countries, while net exports to for example Holland, Austria and Finland probably didn't fall much, if anything at all.