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New DHL index takes the temperature of world trade

[ January 19, 2018   //   ]

DHL has launched an early indicator for the current state and future development of global trade, in partnership with accounting firm Accenture.

The DHL Global Trade Barometer is based on import and export data for a number of intermediate and early-cycle commodities that serve as the basis for further industrial production such as brand labels for clothes, bumpers for cars or mobile touch screens, taken from air and containerised ocean freight in seven countries, which account for more than 75% of world trade. The data is then evaluated with the help of artificial intelligence and provides an outlook on future trade, as well as the prospects for the global economy.

The index will be published quarterly as a single index value on a global level and individually for the seven countries evaluated.

An index above 50 indicates a positive development; values below 50 means a decline in world trade. DHL says that tests with historical data have shown a high correlation between with real containerised trade.

The Barometer for January 2018 – 64 – suggests that global trade will continue to grow within the next three months. This is slightly below the values calculated for previous months, meaning that world trade is expanding but losing momentum. This is due to weakening prospects for Chinese and Japanese trade, which is only partially offset by improved prospects for India, South Korea and the UK.

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