Photographer: Darryl Dyck/Bloomberg

Canada Posts C$3.2 Billion Trade Gap in September

Canada’s trade sector had another weak month in September, as exports continued falling and deficits surpassed C$3 billion for a fourth month.

Highlights of September Trade Report

  • The trade deficit was C$3.18b (est. C$3b)
  • Exports fell 0.3%, declining for a fourth month since touching record high in May, driven by fewer auto shipments
  • Exports were down 7.9% in the third quarter, the biggest quarterly decrease since 2009

Key Takeaways

Exports are suffering one of their biggest tumbles ever, fueling concern the nation’s currency had accelerated too quickly over the period. The slumping trade performance also means Canada’s expansion lost a major engine, reinforcing expectations growth is poised to slow in the second half of the year.

Other Details

  • One positive is that export volumes were up 0.3%, the first gain in four months. Volumes are down 5% from the peak in May
  • Another positive, the August deficit was revised down to C$3.18b from an initially reported C$3.41b
  • Imports were also down for a fourth month, and dropped 4.9% in the third quarter. Import volumes were up 1.3% for the month
  • Essentially, September was a month where a sharp decline in auto shipments was offset by higher exports of oil. Excluding energy, exports fell 1.8%. Excluding autos, exports were up 1.8%

— With assistance by Erik Hertzberg

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