Monthly Merchandise Trade Report

Monthly Report on Canada's International Merchandise Trade Performance, May 2015

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Summary

Canada’s merchandise exports fell 0.6% in May, while merchandise imports advanced 0.2% for the month. Exports of aircraft and parts, motor vehicles and parts, and energy products increased in May, but were offset by declines in metal and non-metallic mineral products and ores. With the decline in exports and the increase in imports, Canada’s merchandise trade balance in May widened to $3.3 billion from $3.0 billion the previous month.

Canadian Merchandise Exports

Canadian merchandise exports declined 0.6% in May as export volumes dropped 2.5% while prices increased 1.9%.

  • May’s decline was the 5th consecutive monthly decline and 8th in the past 10 months. Exports are now 6.7% below the same month a year earlier.
  • Aircraft and parts led export growth in May, up 10.3%, followed by motor vehicles and parts (2.7%) and consumer goods (1.7%). Energy products also registered a 1.3% increase in exports in May, but remain some $20 billion below their levels over the first 5 months of this year as compared to last year. Metal and non-metallic mineral products and ores led the declines in exports, falling by 5.8% and 9.2%, respectively.
  • Excluding energy products, which are down $20 billion (34.9%) so far this year, exports would be 9.8% ahead of where they were over the first five months of last year.
  • Exports fell to seven of Canada’s top 10 trading partners in May, notably to Korea (down 35.9%) and the U.K. (down 26.4%), along with China (down 15.5%) and the United States (down 0.3%). Gains were limited to Germany (10.9%), Mexico (9.4%), and France (6.3%).

Canadian Merchandise Imports

Canadian merchandise imports edged ahead 0.2% in May, with volumes advancing 0.3% and prices falling 0.1%.

  • Industrial chemicals, plastics and rubber (5.1%) and metals and minerals products (5.0%) led the gains, while aircraft and parts (down 12.4%) and metals and minerals ores (down 10.9%) limited the advance.
  • The advance in merchandise imports in May was only the second monthly increase in the first five months of this year. 
  • Imports rose for five of Canada’s top 10 trading partners, with Korea (21.5%) and the U.K. (39.2%) posting notable increases in monthly imports, while imports from the U.S. advanced by 0.5%.

Canada’s Merchandise Trade Balance

Canada’s merchandise trade deficit widened in May to $3.3 billion, from $3.0 billion in April. Canada’s surplus with the U.S. narrowed from $2.3 billion to $2.1 billion in May, while Canada’s trade deficit with countries other than the United States widened from $5.3 billion in April to $5.5 billion in May.

  • The deficit over the first five months of 2015 is $13.6 billion, compared to a surplus of $2.6 billion last year.
Key Export Trade Statistics by Region – May 2015
Region$ billionsChange over previous monthChange over previous yearYTD 2015 $ billionsYTD change over previous year
United States31.981-0.3-6.5159.561-3.6
EU3.008-1.0-10.416.2347.4
China1.676-15.5-5.18.8143.0
Japan0.741-0.3-18.34.041-10.8
Mexico0.6649.414.63.16714.5
Other3.9323.2-6.320.4541.3
All42.002-0.6-6.7212.271-2.1
Key Import Trade Statistics by Region – May 2015
Region$ billionsChange over previous month (%)Change over previous year (%)YTD 2015 $ billionsYTD change over previous year (%)
United States29.8590.52.6149.0565.1
EU4.342-0.1-3.621.1916.1
China3.028-1.2-2.116.45911.8
Japan0.873-17.52.74.58319.0
Mexico1.495-4.51.77.75113.0
Other5.7464.75.626.826-0.4
All45.3420.22.0225.8675.5
Key Trade Balance Statistics – May 2015
Activity$ billionsChange over previous monthChange over previous yearYTD 2015 $ billionsYTD change over previous year
Exports 42.002-0.6-6.7212.271-2.1
Imports45.3420.22.0225.8675.5
Trade Balance-3.340-2.9920.572-13.5962.577
Key Export Trade Statistics by Sector – May 2015
Sector$ billionsChange over previous month (%)Change over previous year (%)YTD 2015 $ billionsYTD change previous year (%)
Farm, fishing and intermediate food products2.567-2.5-5.013.0874.3
Energy products7.6601.3-33.837.398-34.9
Metal ores and non-metallic minerals1.439-9.2-9.17.9053.3
Metal and non-metallic mineral products4.576-5.84.324.39811.5
Basic and industrial chemical, plastic and rubber products2.9580.7-2.014.7100.2
Forestry products and building and packaging materials3.068-3.2-3.416.1007.5
Industrial machinery, equipment and parts2.558-3.54.513.22011.4
Electronic and electrical equipment and parts2.167-4.89.311.32616.1
Motor vehicles and parts6.8982.73.833.17211.8
Aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts2.08710.319.610.14324.8
Consumer goods5.0641.75.725.84010.1
Key Import Trade Statistics by Sector – May 2015
Sector$ billionsChange over previous month (%)Change over previous year (%)YTD 2015 $ billionsYTD change previous year (%)
Farm, fishing and intermediate food products1.3403.46.26.6837.4
Energy products2.9632.9-23.813.774-26.8
Metal ores and non-metallic minerals0.876-10.9-13.84.403-1.6
Metal and non-metallic mineral products3.8425.02.820.0749.0
Basic and industrial chemical, plastic and rubber products3.7025.1-3.218.194-1.1
Forestry products and building and packaging materials2.0180.28.210.2029.6
Industrial machinery, equipment and parts4.262-5.00.322.5908.7
Electronic and electrical equipment and parts4.983-3.80.626.0037.3
Motor vehicles and parts8.4130.47.740.21810.6
Aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts1.633-12.417.78.59132.1
Consumer goods9.7182.38.247.6939.6
Key Trade Statistics Rates & Indices – May 2015
TypeCurrent monthPrevious monthSame month previous yearChange over previous month (%)Change over same month previous year (%)
Commodity Price IndexFootnote 1456.9433.1666.95.5-31.5
Can/Us Exchange Rate1.2181.2331.089-1.211.9
Trade weighted exchange rateFootnote 2102.6101.5110.61.0-7.3
Terms of trade (2007=100)92.592.098.10.5-5.7
Canada-U.S. Trade in Billions of DollarsFootnote 3
MonthExportsImports
May 201531.98129.859
April 201532.06829.724
March 201531.41929.679
February 201531.73929.719
January 201532.35430.077
December 201432.83330.365
November 201433.06129.758
October 201433.38330.510
September 201433.52530.041
August 201433.68029.569
July 201434.27329.305
June 201433.75729.070
May 201434.21329.094

Exports to the EU, China, Japan, Mexico and Others in Billions of DollarsFootnote 4
MonthExports to EUExports to China Exports to JapanExports to MexicoExports to Others
May 20153.0081.6760.7410.6643.932
April 20153.0401.9830.7440.6073.811
March 20153.4231.7140.9040.6564.286
February 20153.2461.7450.7390.6174.375
January 20153.5171.6960.9130.6224.051
December 20143.6891.6790.8800.6104.303
November 20143.1011.5280.8210.7814.317
October 20143.9201.6821.0010.4854.057
September 20143.7341.7520.9800.5284.288
August 20143.5381.8450.9060.5504.155
July 20143.7451.8081.0020.5634.179
June 20143.6591.7710.9720.5634.319
May 20143.3591.7660.9080.5804.195

Exchange Rate Indices (CAN $ vs.)

Month

USDChinese RenminbiEURJapanese YenMexican Peso
May 201589.488.9110.2106.1105.7
April 201588.387.8112.2103.7103.9
March 201586.386.3109.6102.1101.7
February 201587.187.3105.5101.6100.5
January 201589.989.6106.4104.4102.2
December 201494.593.7105.2110.7106.0
November 201496.294.4105.9109.9101.3
October 201497.295.4105.3103.1101.3
September 201498.997.3105.4104.4101.3
August 201499.798.3102.9100.8101.3
July 2014101.4100.8103.0101.4101.9
June 2014100.6100.5101.6100.8101.1
May 2014100.0100.0100.0100.0100.0

Commodity Price IndicesFootnote 5
MonthTotalExcluding EnergyEnergyForestryAgriculture
May 201568.591.159.683.392.0
April 201564.990.253.685.789.6
March 201562.291.148.090.090.8
February 201564.192.350.795.689.2
January 201563.294.347.898.591.9
December 201471.396.258.898.696.9
November 201483.797.176.099.197.4
October 201488.596.683.7100.195.5
September 201494.197.791.8101.894.8
August 201495.7100.292.8101.798.6
July 201499.1101.997.3101.0101.5
June 2014101.399.8102.496.8101.7
May 2014100.0100.0100.0100.0100.0

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Bank of Canada commodity price index: a chain Fisher price index of the US dollar prices of 24 commodities produced in Canada and sold in world markets, with weights updated on an annual basis.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

Footnote 2

Canadian dollar effective exchange rate index: a Bank of Canada trade-weighted index which measures the value of the Canadian dollar vis-à-vis the currencies of its most important trading partners. 

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Footnote 3

 The time series trade data do not include revisions to the historical figures.

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Footnote 4

The time series trade data do not include revisions to the historical figures.

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Footnote 5

Bank of Canada commodity price index, see previous page for details.

Return to footnote 5 referrer