Strong Korean currency sends trade prices down

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Strong Korean currency sends trade prices down

Korea’s import and export prices dropped in December from a month earlier due to a strong won against the U.S. dollar, central bank data showed Monday.

The export price index fell 1.6 percent to 84.5 in December on the back of the value of the Korean currency rising 1.7 percent to 1,085.78 won in December from 1,105.04 in November, according to figures provided by the Bank of Korea.

By item, export prices of electronic products dropped 2.2 percent and those of transportation equipment fell 2.1 percent. Prices of liquid crystal displays decreased 4.9 percent, and those of small cars shrank 6.1 percent.

Prices of dynamic random access memory chips declined 1.6 percent and those of mobile phones contracted 1.7 percent.

Compared with the previous year, the export price index fell 2.1 percent last month from December 2016.

The import price index, meanwhile, moved down 0.8 percent to 82.34 last month from the previous month. The drop is attributable to the 1.3 percent increase in the price of Dubai crude as well as a strong won.

The price of raw materials remained flat while those of intermediate, capital and consumer goods fell by 1 percent, 1.2 percent and 1 percent, respectively. Import prices of electronic products dropped 1.8 percent and those of machinery fell 1.5 percent.

Import prices fell 1 percent last month from a year earlier.

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