Business & Real Estate

California export trade industry rang up robust first quarter

California exporters continued to roll up strong numbers at the close of this year’s first quarter.

Golden State businesses shipped merchandise valued at $14.91 billion in March, up nearly 8.5 percent from $13.75 billion in March last year, according to consulting/research firm Beacon Economics.

Beacon’s analysis was based on statistics released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

March exports of manufactured goods jumped 10.7 percent, to $9.91 billion from $8.95 billion last year. Exports of non-manufactured goods – chiefly agricultural products and raw materials – spiked 20 percent, to $1.74 billion from $1.45 billion. Re-exports dipped slightly, to about $3.26 billion from $3.35 billion.

“We saw very strong demand for California products from Hong Kong, South Korea and France in March as exports of nearly all major export commodities showed solid gains,” said Jock O’Connell, Beacon’s international trade adviser.

Beacon said California’s merchandise exports through the first quarter totaled $41.65 billion, a 10 percent increase over $37.84 billion in the year-ago period.

Mark Glover: 916-321-1184, @markhglover