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Trump’s trade policy failed again in August, China bought more from others, but US stayed the same

It’s still early to tell. But trade data from China showed that Trump’s trade policy failed for another month.

It’s clear that China increased imports from other regions in August like EU (10.6% yoy) and AU (34.0% yoy). Import from US slowed drastically to 2.7% yoy. On the other hand, exports to the US still grew steadily at 13.2% yoy comparing to EU (8.3% yoy) and AU (23.3% yoy). In the end, trade surplus with the US grew 18.4% yoy. And, trade surplus with EU just rose 4.0% yoy. Trade deficit with AU has indeed jumped 45.7% yoy.

For year-to-August, exports to USD rose 13.0% yoy while imports rose 10.3% yoy. Trade surplus rose 14.6% yoy. At the same time, imports from EU rose 14.9% yoy, from AU rose 14.6% yoy. Trade surplus with EU just rose 2.6% yoy. And trade deficit with AU rose 12.2%.

In the end, it’s not the size of trade that matters, but how elastic the demand and supply that matter. For now, it seems like the US is maintaining the pace of growth in Chinese imports. But China is quickly turning to other countries for goods.

Below are some more details.

In CNY terms in August, China’s total trade rose 12.7% yoy to CNY 2.71T. Exports rose 7.9% yoy to CNY 1.44T. Imports rose 18.8% yoy to CNY 1.26T. Trade surplus came in at CNY 180B, wider than July’s CNY 177B.

Year-to-August, total trade rose 9.1% yoy to CNY 19.4. Exports rose 5.4% yoy to CNY 10.3T. Imports rose 13.7% yoy to CNY 9.1T. Trade surplus came in at CNY 1246B.

In USD terms in August, total trade rose 14.3% yoy to USD 407B. Exports rose 9.8% yoy to USD 217B. Imports rose 20.0% yoy to 190B. Trade surplus came in at USD 27.9B, narrowed from July’s USD 28.1B.

Year-to-August, total trade rose 16.1% yoy to USD 3.02T. Exports rose 12.2% yoy to USD 1.60T. Imports rose 20.9% to USD 1.41T. Trade surplus came in at USD 193.6B.

Looking at some details, for the month of August:

  • Exports to EU rose 8.3% yoy to USD 37.0B, imports from EU rose 10.6% yoy to USD 24.9B, trade surplus rose 4.0% to USD 12.1B
  • Exports to US rose 13.2% yoy to USD 44.4B, imports from US rose 2.7% yoy to USD 13.3B, trade surplus rose 18.4% to USD 31.1B
  • Exports to AU rose 23.3% yoy to USD 4.3B, imports from AU rose 34.0% yoy to USD 9.0B, trade deficit rose 45.7% to USD -4.7B

For year-to-August

  • Exports to EU rose 10.7% yoy to USD 265.6B, imports from EU rose 14.9% yoy to USD 180.4B, trade surplus rose 2.6% yoy to USD 84.2B
  • Exports to US rose 13.0% yoy to USD 303.4B, imports from US rose 10.3% yoy to USD 110.8B, trade surplus rose 14.6% to USD 192.6B
  • Exports to AU rose 18.1% yoy to USD 30.1B, imports from AU rose 14.6% yoy to USD 71.2B, trade deficit rose 12.2% yoy to USD -41.2B.

August 2018 data. August 2017 data.

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