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South Korea’s Export Rebound Masks Wider Risks From Delta Outbreaks

South Korean Export Strength Points to Robust Global Demand
Photographer: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

South Korea’s surging exports signal global trade held up through most of August, although a drumbeat of bad news on the coronavirus suggests the delta variant may soon surpass chip shortages as the world’s biggest production bottleneck.

An early trade report on Monday showed South Korea’s exports climbed 41% in the first 20 days of the month, compared with last year’s depressed level, with semiconductors shipments rising by almost the same amount. Exports to China were surprisingly strong.