Statistics Canada released the Canadian International Merchandise Trade report for November on Wednesday. A favorable combination of a .7% drop in imports combined with an overall .4% increase in exports led to a reduction in Canada's trade deficit with the world to $2 billion, the 15th consecutive month of reporting a trade deficit, but at a four-month low of $1.985 billion, well-below the $3.7 billion deficit reported in March.
Total exports of all products was reported at $43.254 billion (balance of payments, seasonally adjusted), after falling in each of the past three months, while the country's farm, fishing and intermediate food product exports was reported at $2.684 billion, the first month-over-month increase in four months. This category's exports as a percentage of total exports are calculated at 6.2%, a five-month high. A major drag on the economy continues to be the export of energy products, reported at $5.919 billion, falling for the fifth consecutive month, with November being the weakest month since May 2009.
Here's a look at random agriculture commodity data reported today:
November exports of lentils were reported at 313,852 metric tons, down sharply from October and the weakest month seen this crop year. Year-to-date, 1.364 million metric tons have been exported (since the August 1 start to the 2015/16 crop year), up 64.8% from the same period in 2014 and 114.2% higher than the three-year average.
Total exports to India are at 692,157 mt, representing 50.7% of all exports as compared to the 33.5% of the total volume shipped to this country in the first four months of the 2014/15 crop year.
The current AAFC target for 2015/16 exports is a record 2.4 mmt, with current year-to-date exports now at 56.8% of this target with the data reported for the first 33% of the crop year. The current pace of exports remains well ahead of the pace needed to reach this target and availability of supplies will be the limiting factor moving forward.
November exports of dry peas are reported at 138,880 mt and this is the smallest monthly volume shipped this crop year. Year-to-date, 1.312 mmt has been shipped, 89.4% of last year's volume as of the same month, while is 13.3% above the three-year average.
To date, India has taken 692,038 mt, slightly more than the same period in 2014/15, while representing 52.7% of the total volume shipped as compared to the 43.7% of the volume shipped in the first four months of 2014/15. Year-to-date exports currently represent 44.5% of the 2.950 mmt target set by AAFC, with the November data representing the first 33% of the crop year.
As of the end of November, Canadian chickpea exports totaled 39,738 mt, 118% above the year-ago volume, while 156% above the three-year average over this four-month period. The current pace of exports represents 46.8% of the annual export target of 85,000 mt forecast by AAFC, with supply expected to be the limiting factor at some point over the crop year.
Exports of mustard are reported at 36,503 mt as of the end of November, 83.3% of the volume shipped in the same period last year and 83.4% of the three-year average for this period. As of the end of November, 30% of the 120,000 mt export target set by AAFC has been shipped, slightly behind the steady pace needed to reach this target.
A total of 51,470 mt of canary seed has been exported, 73% of the volume shipped in the same period last year and 92% of the three-year average. Just over 33% of the expected target of 155,000 mt has been shipped, with movement equal to the steady pace needed to reach this target.
The country's corn exports are reported to total 179,862 mt as of the end of November, or the third month of the row-crop crop year. This is 55.3% higher than the same period last year, while 97.6% of the three-year average. To date, 36% of AAFC's 500,000 mt target has been reached, with the crop year only 25% complete, suggesting that corn exports may prove to be higher than expected. Shipments to the United States are up sharply from last crop year, when the U.S. took 36,297 mt in the September-through-November period. This crop year, the U.S. has been shipped close to 58% of the total export volume, totaling 103,910 mt.
Canada's exports of soybeans have been reported at 2.018 mmt, up 33.5% from 2014 and 19.4% above the three-year average for the September-through-November period or the first quarter of the row-crop crop year. The current target reported by AAFC is 4.1 mmt, with year-to-date exports representing 49.2% of this target and well-ahead of the pace needed to reach this level. Volume shipped to China has jumped from 279,000 mt in the first three months of 2014/15 to 705,536 mt in September, October and November 2015, representing 35% of total shipments.
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