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10 November 2017, 01:46 | Darnell Patrick
China Oct trade surplus with US at $26.62 billion, down from Sept-customs data
That resulted in US$26.62 billion (S$36.2 billion) trade surplus with the United States last month, based on Reuters' calculations of official data, down from a record US$28.08 billion in September.
Shipments were forecast to climb 7.1 percent after rising 8.1 percent in September.
Imports grew 17.2 percent year-on-year in October, beating forecast of 16.0 percent growth but slightly slower than the 18.7 percent rise in September.
Exports of machinery, electronics and labor-intensive products continued to expand in the first ten months, while the volume of steel exports dropped 30.4 percent year on year to 64.49 million tonnes.
Consequently, the trade surplus totaled $38.2 billion in October versus the expected level of $39.1 billion.
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"Lower imports reflected less purchases from independent refineries as many of them are running out of crude quota for this year", said Li Yan, oil analyst with Zibo Longzhong Information Group.
The trade data also showed that China's goods surplus with the United States, historically a sore spot in relations between the two nations, narrowed last month, as investors awaited US President Donald Trump's arrival in Beijing yesterday.
Meanwhile gas arrivals including pipeline imports and LNG shipments reached 5.81 million tonnes, retreating from September but up from only 3.82 million tonnes previous year.
The economist said this reflects a slight easing of growth in other emerging markets along with weaker domestic demand as a result of slower infrastructure spending.
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