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Hungary exports drop, imports down slightly yr/yr in March

Hungary's exports fell in March in the second yr/yr drop in a row, bringing Q1 exports down. March imports were practically unchanged in euro terms, preliminary figures published by the Central Statistics Office (KSH) on Wednesday show.
Hungary had a €608.2 million trade surplus in March, down from €691.2 million in February and down from €836.6 million in March 2011. Exports fell 3.6% in euro terms from twelve months earlier to €7.06 billion after dropping 1.2% yr/yr in February, KSH said, attributing the drop to exchange rate changes.
Export value dropped yr/yr in euro terms last December for the first time in two years. March imports reached €6.452 billion, dropping a slight 0.6% in twelve months after a 1.5% rise in February. Imports fell in euro terms for the first time since December 2009.
The pace of import growth has exceeded that of exports (or fell less than did exports) every month since last November. The January-March trade surplus reached €1.719 billion, down from €2.129 billion one year earlier. Q1 exports were down 1.0% in euro terms from a year earlier at €19.933 billion and Q1 imports rose 1.1% from the same period last year to €18.214 billion.
In 2011 Hungary's exports rose 11.8% and imports rose 10.8% from 2010. KSH will publish a second reading of the March trade figures on June 1.