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November 4, 2014

Spain sells more, but Europe buys less

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Spain sells more, but Europe buys less

Improvement in domestic consumption and stagnation in the euro area explain the growth of the trade deficit in Spain.

During the economic crisis, Spanish exports has not ceased to grow, while imports went noticeably down. Nevertheless, at present, the Spanish economy went in the right direction, as foreign purchases of Spain began to recover its volume, leaving a huge trade deficit. Thus, after the summer holidays and the negative difference between buying and selling outside the Spanish border, the imports regained weight in the national trade balance. In the period from January to August 2014, the trade deficit reached 16.481.000 euros, which is almost twice that of the accumulated deficit in the same month last year. In fact, in August Spanish coverage rate, i.e. the percentage of the import that can cover export, was lowest in the year, 85.5%.

Thus, the data change the trend observed during the past year. Within a few months of 2013, the national economy has achieved unprecedented in history: to sell more abroad than to buy, and thus managed to finish the year with a trade deficit in the euro 17,741,000, representing 1.73% of GDP, a record low figure. This evolution of the trade balance was disrupted by reduction of the national consumption. In January-August 2013 imports amounted to Spain 164.218,9 million euros, in the eighth month of 2014 imports reached 173. 673.000 euros, which is 5.8% more.

However, after the initial burst of strong activity, little by little, beginning to be visible to the stabilization of foreign purchases. “Imports, which grew over the past few months, has now become more moderate. It continues to grow, but now parallel with the stabilization of domestic demand,” – said the economist of Savings Banks Fund (Funcas), María Jesús Fernández. Increase in import purchases slowed in August 2014 compared to the first months of this year, and were only slightly higher than in the same month in 2013 (19.113.000 euros compared with 19.0240.00 euros last year). This reflects the rate set by domestic demand, as the final consumption expenditure of households increased in the first quarter compared with the previous by 5.7%, but in the period from April to June fell by 6.14%.


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