In April, exports fell by 2 percent month-on-month to AUD 34.19 billion. Sales of non-rural goods dropped by 2 percent to AUD 21.35 billion, mainly due to coal, coke and briquettes (-7 percent); and metal ores and minerals (-4 percent). Also, sales of rural goods fell by AUD 8 million to AUD 4 billion, mainly due cereal grains and cereal preparations (-12 percent); and those of non-monetary gold decreased by 16 percent to AUD 1.53 billion. On the other hand, exports of services went up by 1 percent to AUD 7.3 billion, due to travel sales (1 percent); and other services (1 percent). In addition, net exports of goods under merchanting increased by 83 percent to AUD 11 million.
Imports were unchanged at AUD 33.21 billion. Purchases of consumption goods declined by 2 percent to AUD 8.46 billion, mostly due to non-industrial transport equipment (-6 percent); consumption goods n.e.s (-1 percent). textiles, clothing and footwear (-2 percent); and food and beverages, mainly for consumption (-2 percent). Also, imports of non-monetary gold tumbled 15 percent to AUD 608 million. On the other hand, purchases of intermediate and other merchandise goods increased by 1 percent to AUD 10.45 billion, driven by fuels and lubricants (4 percent); and primary industrial supplies, n.e.s (68 percent). In addition, inbound shipments of capital goods rose by 2 percent to AUD 6.22 billion, led by civil aircraft and confidentialised items (32 percent) and ADP equipment (-15 percent). At the same time, imports of services grew by 1 percent to AUD 7.48 billion, mainly due to travel purchases (1 percent); and other services (1 percent).
Considering the first four months ofthe year, the trade surplus came in at AUD 5.25 billion, down sharply from AUD 6.84 billion surplus in the same period the prior year.