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South Korea returns to trade surplus in June

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South Korea returned to a trade surplus in June after 15 consecutive months of deficits, as a decline in exports moderated significantly.

Exports fell 6.0% from a year earlier, to $54.24 billion, following a 15.2% drop in May, according to preliminary data released by the country’s trade ministry on Saturday. The median market forecast was for a 4.0% contraction in June.

Imports dropped 11.7% from a year earlier, to $53.11 billion in June, resulting in a trade surplus of $1.13 billion. That ended a streak of monthly deficits since March 2022.

Shipments of ships and vehicles rose 99% and 58%, respectively, from a year earlier in June while those of computer chips fell 28% on year, the trade data showed.

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Exports to China declined 19% on year in June, slower than a 21% drop in May, the data showed.



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