Monthly Merchandise Trade Report

Monthly Report on Canada's International Merchandise Trade Performance, October 2019

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Over the first 10 months of 2019, merchandise exports were up 1.6% while imports were up 1.5%.

Trade Balance

  • Canada’s trade deficit with the world narrowed slightly from $1.2 billion in September to $1.1 billion in October.

Exports

  • Exports rose 0.8% in October to reach $49.9 billion.
    • Export increases were observed in 6 of 11 sectors.
    • Consumer goods, energy and metal and non-metallic mineral products contributed the most to the increase.

Imports

  • Imports were up 0.5% to $51.0 billion in October.
    • Energy products contributed the most to the increase.
    • Despite the overall gain, decreases were observed in 7 of 11 sectors. 

Chart 1: Value of Canada's trade in goods, October 2014 to October 2019

Canada-U.S. Trade in Billions of Dollars

Source: Statistics Canada Table 12-10-0011-01, Merchandise imports and exports, Balance of payments basis, seasonally adjusted.

Text Version
Merchandise exports and imports, billions of dollars
ExportsImports
February 201443.242.6
March 201444.442.9
April 201443.743.4
May 201445.244.7
June 201445.143.5
July 201445.343.6
August 201444.843.8
September 201445.044.4
October 201445.045.2
November 201443.644.4
December 201443.544.8
January 201542.344.7
February 201542.844.6
March 201543.146.6
April 201542.945.3
May 201542.545.1
June 201544.845.3
July 201545.646.0
August 201544.846.4
September 201544.346.4
October 201543.345.8
November 201543.146.2
December 201544.546.5
January 201645.546.8
February 201643.346.5
March 201641.544.7
April 201641.544.6
May 201640.944.5
June 201641.044.9
July 201643.144.6
August 201644.245.7
September 201644.048.0
October 201644.445.7
November 201646.245.2
December 201645.945.7
January 201746.646.8
February 201745.647.0
March 201746.747.8
April 201747.248.1
May 201748.549.9
June 201745.849.3
July 201743.746.5
August 201743.946.8
September 201743.646.9
October 201744.746.1
November 201746.349.2
December 201746.749.8
January 201845.947.7
February 201846.548.8
March 201848.251.9
April 201849.050.6
May 201848.951.8
June 201850.851.6
July 201851.351.3
August 201850.751.1
September 201850.150.8
October 201850.050.6
November 201847.950.1
December 201846.251.0
January 201948.651.7
February 201948.050.9

Background

Canadian Merchandise Exports

Canadian merchandise exports: increased 0.8% in October, to $49.9 billion. Increases were observed in 6 of 11 sectors.

Year-to-date, exports were up 1.6% compared to the same period in 2018.

Canadian Merchandise Imports

Canadian merchandise imports: rose 0.5% to $51.0 billion in October despite decreases observed in 7 of 11 sectors.

Year-to-date, imports were up 1.5% compared to the same period in 2018.

United States:

  • Exports to the United States increased 1.0% to $37.9 billion in October.
  • Imports from the United States contracted 1.7% to $32.4 billion.
  • As a result, Canada’s merchandise trade surplus with the United States increased from $4.6 billion in September to $5.5 billion in October.
Table 1: Changes in Canadian Trade: monthly, year-to-date and by principal trading partners
October 
  2019
Exports
($ millions)
Monthly  
Change
Year-to-date 
% change
previous year 
Imports
($ millions)
Monthly
Change
Year-to-date 
% change
previous year 
Source: Statistics Canada Table 12-10-0011-01, Merchandise imports and exports, Balance of payments basis, seasonally adjusted, current dollars.
All Countries49,9133811.6%50,9922311.5%
% Changen.a.0.8%n.a.n.a.0.5%n.a.
Volume changen.a.0.7%n.a.n.a.0.8%n.a.
Price changen.a.0.0%n.a.n.a.-0.4%n.a.
       
United States37,8843692.4 32,388-5450.7
Mexico618-20-12.0 1,723100-2.3
EU4,2601924.55,5733583.0
  United Kingdom1,9012718.87006-0.7
  Germany579-2621.01,33462-1.8
  France2891-0.4438-94.1
India3047421.23473010.4
China1,618-388-12.33,823-1163.0
Japan1,054-61-2.81,018-4-3.6
South Korea49211-2.673717.5

Countries other than United States:

  • Exports to non-U.S. countries edged up 0.1% in October.
    • Higher exports to Norway (nickel), India (copper), Hong Kong (gold) and Peru (wheat) were largely offset by lower exports of soybeans and canola to China.
  • Imports from countries other than the United States advanced 4.4% in October.
    • Higher imports of pharmaceuticals from Belgium and Switzerland, as well as higher imports of light trucks from Mexico were partially offset by lower imports of various products from China.
  • As a result, Canada’s trade deficit with countries other than the United States widened from $5.8 billion in September to $6.6 billion in October. 

Commodities/Products

In October, exports grew 0.8% to $49.9 billion as export volumes increased 0.7%, while export prices were virtually unchanged.

Export highlights:

  • Exports of consumer goods rose in October (+5.5%), mainly on higher exports of miscellaneous goods and supplies, which include artwork such as paintings and sculptures.
    • These pieces of fine art were destined to an art fair in New York.
  • Exports of energy products also rose in October, mostly on higher exports of crude oil (+2.7%) and refined petroleum (+15.2%).
    • Exports of refined petroleum products were up in October mainly on higher exports of fuel oils and diesel to the U.S.
  • Exports of metal and non-metallic mineral products increased in October (+5.7%), as a result of higher exports of gold.
    • Higher exports of refined gold to the U.S. were mostly responsible for the increase.
  • Partially offsetting the overall gain, exports of farm and fishing products (-12.6%) posted the largest decline in October, mostly on lower shipments of soybeans to China.

    In October, imports increased 0.5% to $51.0 billion as import prices decreased 0.4%, and import volumes rose 0.8%.

Import highlights:

  • Imports of energy products increased in October (+8.9%), mainly on higher imports of crude oil and crude bitumen. Imports of natural gas (+46.2%) and refined petroleum (+6.8%) also contributed to the increase. 
  • Imports of motor vehicles and parts fell in October (-3.3%) to $9.3 billion, the fifth consecutive monthly decrease.
    • Imports of passenger cars and light trucks (-4.7%) were responsible for most of the decline.
Table 2: Exports and Imports by commodities – October 2019 and % change October 2018 to October 2019
Commodity
October 2019
Exports
($ millions)
Year-to-date 
% change
previous year
Imports
($ millions)
Year-to-date 
% change
previous year
Resource Products26,039-3.2%      15,746-0.7%
  Energy9,4930.6%      3,4666.9%
Non-resource Products22,4934.6%      33,2990.6%
  Industrial Machinery & Equipment3,4424.0%        5,706-1.5%
Electronic./Electric. Machin. & Equip.2,5060.0%        6,1623.8%
  Motor Vehicles7,687-0.5%        9,255-0.2%
  Aircrafts/Other Transportation Equip.2,64516.6%        1,8391.4%
  Consumer Goods6,2139.0%      10,3380.6%
All commodities49,9130.1%      50,992 0.6%

Source: Statistics Canada Table 12-10-0121-01, International merchandise trade data by North American Product Classification System (NAPCS) – seasonally adjusted. Totals don’t add up as “Special transactions trade” and “Other balance of payments adjustments” are not included.