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S. Korea's trade terms continue to worsen in Aug.

Sep 28. 2019
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By The Korea Herald

South Korea's trade terms continued to decline in August amid a continued drop in exports, central bank data showed Friday.

The terms of trade index for products came to 89.94 in the month, down 4.6 percent from the same month last year, according to the data from the Bank of Korea .

The reading marks 21 consecutive months of decline in the index. The trade terms index measures the amount of imports a country can purchase for each unit of exports. A reading below 100 means import prices are higher than those of exports, resulting in unfavorable terms of trade.

South Korea's exports have dipped for nine consecutive months since December, and are projected to fall again this month with outbound shipments plunging 21.8 percent on-year in the first 20 days.

In August, the export volume index slipped 5.8 percent from a year earlier while the import volume index gained 1.5 percent over the same period.

The steady decline in outbound shipments is casting woes over the export-dependent economy.

Asia's fourth-largest economy grew at a disappointing pace of 1.9 percent on-year in the first half, forcing the central bank to revise down its growth outlook to 2.2 percent in July from 2.5 percent forecast three months earlier.

The prolonged trade dispute between the US and China is largely blamed for the drop in South Korean exports, but the country's own trade conflict with Japan is expected to further weigh on its exports and economy. (Yonhap)


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