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China’s November Trade Data Reconfirms Slowdown Fears

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Dec. 10 2018, Updated 11:15 a.m. ET

China’s November trade data

On December 8, China (FXI) released its trade data for November. The country’s trade data received even more scrutiny this year amid the US-China trade war. The world’s two largest economies have been involved in a bitter trade war and have imposed tariffs on billions of dollars of each other’s goods.

China’s exports and imports were far lower than expected last month. China’s exports rose 5.4% YoY, while its imports rose 3%. In October, China’s exports rose 15.6% YoY while its imports rose 21.4%. As you can see, export and import growth slowed down sharply from the previous month. Export growth was the slowest since March, while imports saw the smallest rise since October 2016. Fewer imports signal a slowdown in the Chinese economy (BABA).

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US exports

Meanwhile, even with the tariffs, Chinese exports to the United States rose 9.8% YoY last month. However, China imported fewer goods from the United States, and imports fell a whopping 25% YoY in November. This tilted the trade balance further in China’s favor. According to Reuters, China’s trade surplus with the United States (QQQ) rose to a new record high of $35.55 billion last month. Notably, President Trump has threatened to impose tariffs on all imports from China (NIO) including Apple (AAPL) products if talks don’t yield desired results.

China’s trade data is especially crucial for metal and mining investors. In the next article, we’ll see what does China’s November trade data could mean for US steel stocks.

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