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Wednesday 9 January 2019

Record export values

National income boom

Australian export values have been humming along in Aussie dollar terms, and it's no longer all about iron ore and coal, with LNG notching another record month in November at more than $4½ billion (and gold appearing likely to contribute significantly this year in A$ terms). 

Services exports are firing too, thanks to tourism, education, and business services, and a Budget surplus now lies directly ahead. 

As the Gorgon and Gladstone GLNG volumes ramp up Western Australia and Queensland are now recording big trade surpluses, including a walloping $108 billion in WA's case over the year to November 2018, shattering all previous records. 

November was therefore a record month for export values at about $38½ billion, with the annual value of Australian exports powering higher to $432 billion, and the income recession of 2016 but a fading memory. 

The trade services balance is now, well, back in balance...while tourism services quietly racked up a thunderous surplus in excess of $1 billion in November 2018 for the first time on record.

Australia will see an unprecedented 10 million short-term visitors in 2019 for the first time. 

There was a solid 1.7 per cent monthly increase in the value of imports, leaving the trade surplus at about $2 billion for the month. 

Thus, the paradox of the Aussie economy, built on a powerful base of exports and with resources investment finally set to rise again.

In fact, most of the historic figures look rosy enough, but the metropolitan services economy is steadily threatening to choke itself on its own lack of liquidity.

Interesting times.