Trade data is out today from ONS – and shows that exports rose in the first quarter of 2013.
The balance of trade in goods was at an estimated £9.1 billion in March, at similar levels to the previous month. Total goods exports increased by 4.9% to £25.7 billion with total imports increasing by 3.2% to £34.8 billion.
However, monthly figures can be volatile, and the strong rise in exports in March followed a weak February. But even looking at the first quarter of 2013, the value of export trade in goods rose by 1% and the value of imports was pretty much unchanged; the deficit shrank by £0.6 billion.
Some good news on non-EU goods exports with the figures showing them up 47% in 2013 Q1 compared with pre-recession.
Also a positive story on the sector front, with the data today showing the value of automotive exports at its highest since at least 1998 (when the data series starts).
And I know it's Friday so those in need of more sector facts, hold on a while longer as we'll have the regular Sector Friday blog today too…