Italy posted a trade deficit with the rest of the world of 1.354 billion euros in April, widening sharply from a deficit of 155 million euros in the same month of 2004, national statistics office ISTAT said on Thursday. The deficit also increased from March, when it stood at 845 million euros.
Trade with European Union countries alone showed an April deficit of 368 million euros, compared with a 109 million euro deficit in April last year.
A 5.854 billion euro cumulative trade deficit with the rest of the world in the first four months of this year was the largest Jan-April deficit since at least 1991.
Italian imports from the rest of the world rose 6.5 percent year-on-year in April, far outstripping a 1.6 percent increase in exports. Imports from the EU in April were up 1.8 percent on the year, while exports were flat compared with the year before.
Source: Reuters via NTC Research
I don’t think I am being too alarmist if I say that something nasty is happening to the international competitiveness of Spain, Italy, Greece and Portugal.