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WTO’s Trade Growth Indicator Drops

The World Trade Organization says growth in the global trade of merchandise will remain below trend through at least the third quarter of 2019.

The World Trade Organization says growth in the global trade of merchandise will remain below trend through at least the third quarter of 2019.

WTO’s Goods Trade Barometer for July-September is 95.7 against a baseline value of 100. In May, the indicator was at 96.3. The index has been losing momentum since the third quarter of 2018.

The indicator is a composite of six drivers of trade that offers a real-time assessment of the trajectory of world trade. WTO says that index values for all components are below 100: electronic components (90.7), air freight (91.4), automotive products (93.5), raw materials (97.1), export orders (97.5) and container shipping (99.0).

WTO attributes the slower pace of growth to “historically high” trade restrictions and uncertainty. It cautions that the resulting tensions represent “significant downside risks” to trade forecasts.

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