Indicator of global manufacturing surging
Year-on-year growth of South Korean exports (RHS, orange) and US industrial production (LHS, blue) move in tandem
Average daily exports for the first twenty days of May in South Korea soared 59% YoY and were 26% above levels in 2019 (Bloomberg). The South Korean government is among the first to release trade data every month, and its reports are widely watched as a leading indicator of global manufacturing. Strong shipments out of Asia point to increasing sales in overseas markets, and suggests that appetite for petchem feedstocks in the region is likely to grow, along with demand for tonnage.