Canada’s Trade Deficit Stays Elevated on Import Rebound

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Canada’s trade gap was little changed in September at elevated levels as imports have rebounded more quickly than exports since the onset of the pandemic.

The deficit was C$3.25 billion ($2.47 billion), from a revised C$3.21 billion in August, Statistics Canada reported Wednesday in Ottawa. Economists had forecast a deficit of C$2.35 billion, the median of 14 estimates in a Bloomberg survey.

Both exports and imports rose 1.5% in September, but since the pandemic started, Canada has brought in more goods and services than it has shipped out.

Imports are at 98% of pre-pandemic levels, versus 94% for exports. Machinery and equipment imports rose 6.7% in September.

Combined, exports and imports have increased 37% since falling to a decade-low in April, leaving them at 96% of pre-pandemic levels.

The gain in exports was led by forestry products, up 10% in September and 16% from February, the agency said. Aircraft exports climbed 13% in the month.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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