Australia recorded its 20th monthly trade deficit in a row as the resource-dependent nation suffers from a steep decline in key commodity prices, while a weaker Australian dollar pushes up the costs of some imports.

The November trade deficit was A$2.906bn, 11 per cent narrower than the previous month and also below estimates at A$2.985bn. October’s figure was revised upwards, slightly, from A$3.305bn to A$3.247bn.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that exports rose 1 per cent from a year earlier, while imports declined by 1 per cent.

Imports have been higher than exports in every month since April 2014, and for eight months now the monthly gaps have been in excess of A$2bn.

For seasonally-adjusted exports, the ABS reported:

Goods and services credits rose $160m (1%) to $26,764m. Rural goods rose $554m (15%). Non-monetary gold fell $216m (15%) and non-rural goods fell $214m (1%). Net exports of goods under merchanting remained steady at $14m. Services credits rose $35m (1%).

For seasonally-adjusted imports, it said:

goods and services debits fell $182m (1%) to $29,670m. Intermediate and other merchandise goods fell $165m (2%) and non-monetary gold fell $157m (36%).Capital goods rose $67m (1%) and consumption goods rose $63m (1%). Services debits rose $9m

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