China's April Trade Surplus Jumps 63% to $17B

by: Steven Towns

China's trade surplus continues to grow at a blistering pace, up 88% y/y to $63.3 billion through April. Exports climbed 26.8% and imports increased 21.3% last month. A U.S.-China Strategic Economic Dialogue will be held May 23 -24 in Washington, with the trade surplus and currency-related issues expected to be priority topics. A Hong Kong-based DBS Bank senior economist commented: "The yuan will have to appreciate further. The pace is already speeding up ahead of (Vice Premier) Wu's arrival in the U.S. [which will] alleviate tension and create a better atmosphere." The yuan is currently trading at its highest level against the U.S. dollar since its peg ended in July 2005, having appreciated 7.7% since then and 0.25% alone this week. Critics in the U.S. say Beijing may acknowledge measures need to be taken, but are dissatisfied with the results to-date. Treasury Secretary Paulson is once again looking for "tangible results" at the second biannual trade meeting later this month.

Sources: Associated Press, Bloomberg
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