Page last updated at 11:07 GMT, Wednesday, 9 December 2009

UK trade gap widens unexpectedly

VW cars waiting to be exported from Germany
The car scrappage scheme continues to boost demand for imported cars

The UK's trade deficit with the rest of the world widened in October.

Imports rose more than exports, an unexpected move given the weakness of the pound, which makes foreign-made goods more expensive in the UK.

The deficit in goods and services was £3.2bn compared with £3.1bn in September, the Office for National Statistics said.

The deficit on trade in goods grew by £0.2bn to £7.1bn in October, the largest deficit since January.

Excluding oil, the volume of imports was 4.3% higher in October than September. Exports were 3.8% higher.

Economists, who were expecting a stronger rise in exports given the weakness of the pound, expressed their disappointment.

"It's pretty depressing," said Alan Clarke from BNP Paribas.

"We were hoping part of the recovery would come from [export] trade, but so far it's just not happening."

However, others welcomed indications that consumer demand had strengthened.

"Both imports and exports have gone up, but imports somewhat more than exports suggesting perhaps that there has been something of a pick up in domestic demand, which is clearly a positive," said Amit Kara, from UBS.



Print Sponsor


RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

FROM OTHER NEWS SITES
Times Online Britains trade deficit widens in October - 18 mins ago
Finance 24 Japan recovery stumbling - 2 hrs ago
Reuters UK Dire fiscal future points to low rates - 2 hrs ago
The Independent Housing: Stamp duty blow to first-time buyers - 7 hrs ago
The Scotsman UK's goods deficit with rest of world widens - 7 hrs ago



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific