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Hungary August trade surplus revised up to €588 mln in 2nd reading

Hungary had a €587.6 million trade surplus in August, up €12.5 million from a first reading released on October 9 and up from €454.4 million in the same month a year earlier, the Central Statistics Office (KSH) said in a second reading on Wednesday.

Exports rose 2.3% to €6.607 billion during the period, the revised data show. They rose less, by 1.7% yr/yr in volume terms.

August imports edged up 0.2% to €6.019 billion, and they fell 0.3% in volume terms, in the first volume drop since April.

Both the slower growth of exports and the drop of imports reflects base effects.

The trade surplus for January-August came to €4.680 billion, down from €4.739 billion in the same period a year earlier. Exports climbed 3.1% in volume term and rose 1.1% in euros to €53.113 billion. Eight-month imports increased 1.6% in volumes and 1.4% in euros to €48.446 billion.

Hungary's terms of trade deteriorated by 1.8% in the first eight months from a year earlier as forint-term export prices rose 6.5% and import prices rose 8.4% in the period. In August alone, forint-term export prices were up 3.9% and forint-term import prices rose 4.0% yr/yr, resulting only in a slight 0.1% worsening in the terms of trade.

Industrial producer prices rose 0.8% from August after monthly drops in the previous three months. The rise mainly reflected forint-term export prices, pushed higher by the weakening of the forint to the euro, the main currency of trade, after strengthening in the previous months.

The forint weakened 1.9% to the euro and firmed 1.7% to the US dollar from August. It strengthened 0.2% to the euro and weakened 6.9% to the dollar in the twelve months to September.

Export prices, calculated in forint terms, rose 1.1% month-on-month after falling 0.6% a month earlier. Their twelve-month rise slowed to 1.3% from a 4.6% increase in August.

Domestic producer prices rose 0.3% a month in September after no change in August. They rose 4.2% yr/yr after a 5.7% increase in August.

January-September producer prices were up 6.2% as domestic producer prices rose 6.7% and forint-term export prices rose 5.9% in the period.