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September 9, 2010    

UK trade deficit widens in July

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by Kay Murchie

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed the UK’s trade deficit widened in July to a record high, as imports soared and exports fell.

According to the ONS, the goods trade gap widened to £8.667 billion in July, up from £7.532 billion the previous month.

The deficit was the biggest since the series began more than 12 years ago and surprised analysts, who had expected a flat reading.

The ONS said imports rose 3.1% on the month, fuelled by an increase in imports of chemicals and oil.

Meanwhile, exports fell 0.9%.

Following the news, the pound fell more than 0.1% against the US dollar to $1.5386.

The news comes as the Bank of England is today expected to keep interest rates at the record low of 0.5%.

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