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Korea's trade terms worsen for 26th straight month in Jan.

All News 12:00 February 26, 2020

SEOUL, Feb. 26 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's trade terms continued to worsen in January from a year earlier, with its export prices falling at a faster rate than import prices, central bank data showed Wednesday.

The terms of trade index for products came to 89.72 in the month, down 5 percent from the same month last year, according to preliminary data from the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The index has been on a steady decline since December 2017. It measures the amount of imports a country can purchase for each unit of exports.

This file photo, taken April 1, 2019, shows stacks of export containers at South Korea's largest seaport in Busan, 450 kilometers southeast of Seoul. (Yonhap)

"The terms of trade index for products dropped 5.0 percent from the same month a year earlier as export prices dropped by a greater margin than import prices," the BOK said in a press release.

In January, the export price index plunged 9.4 percent on-year to 99.29, while the import price index dipped 5.8 percent to 118.38 over the cited period.

South Korea's exports have dropped for 14 consecutive months since December 2018, partly because of weak global prices, especially those of semiconductors and petroleum products -- the country's two largest export items.

In the first 20 days of February, outbound shipments jumped 12.4 percent on-year to US$26.3 billion, largely on the recovery of global chip prices, earlier reports said.


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