Actual (Nov): CZK 18.4bn
Consensus: CZK 18.8bn
Previous (Oct): CZK 26.0bn
The November trade balance came out in line with expectations. Although the surplus has somewhat shrunk compared with the previous record reading, it is still high. Also the increasing turnover is good news. Both exports and imports accelerated in November; they increased by 9.6 pct and 6.3 pct y-o-y, respectively. We can see another growth of surplus of trade in vehicles (CZK 35.6bn) and manufactured articles (CZK 5.0bn). On the other hand, the positive balance in these areas is partly offset by deficits in the trade with mineral fuels and chemicals (CZK -24.5bn in total). It means that despite the increasing turnover there are no big changes in the trade balance structure.
The good growth of industry helped to increase exports in November. At the same time, thanks to a bigger demand for materials and intermediate products, it was likely also behind the acceleration of imports. We do not expect that consumer demand was a strong driver of the growth of imports; retail sales should show roughly stagnation in November. Due to seasonal effects trade balance will likely be negative in December, but the full-year result will be significantly better compared with the previous year anyway. The surplus may reach CZK 180bn.