RTTNews - The eurozone's trade surplus in April improved from March as well as from the year-ago period, a report from the Eurostat showed Wednesday.

The trade surplus increased to EUR2.7 billion in April from a revised surplus of EUR1.8 billion in March, and a EUR2.2 billion surplus last year. For March, the trade surplus was initially reported as EUR0.4 billion. Economists expected a trade deficit of EUR1.5 billion for April.

During the month, exports dropped 27% annually to EUR102.1 billion, after a revised 15.5% fall in March. Imports fell 28% to EUR99.4 billion, following a 18% drop in the preceding month.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the trade deficit stood at EUR0.3 billion in April, lower than a deficit of EUR1.8 billion in March. Exports fell 1.3% month-on-month, while imports were down 2.7%.

For the four months ended April, the eurozone recorded a trade deficit of EUR8.1 billion, lower than the EUR9.5 billion seen in the same period last year. During this period, exports and imports dropped 23% each.

Earlier, the European Central Bank's Governing Council Member Yves Mersch said in a press conference that the recession-hit eurozone is likely to see positive growth in the next twelve months. Our main scenario foresees that we will start to have positive growth rates again sometime in the middle of next year, Mersche said.

The policymaker said economic confidence in the eurozone was rising more than anticipated, and indicated that there would be no need for a stimulus at present.

The eurozone's gross domestic product or GDP contracted 2.5% in the first quarter, representing the largest fall since records began in 1995, and was also worse than a 1.8% contraction seen in the fourth quarter.

Year-on-year, the GDP was down by a revised 4.8%, larger than a 1.7% contraction seen in the fourth quarter.

The region's jobless rate hit a near 10-year high of 9.2% in April. But at the same time, consumer prices fell flat year-on-year in May, to reach the lowest level since records began in 1996, after rising 0.6% in April.

Meanwhile, another report released by the Eurostat on Wednesday showed that construction output increased a seasonally adjusted 0.6% month-on-month in April, at the same pace as the previous month. The April figure was revised from the 1% decline reported initially.

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