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Data presentation - Summary description

External trade in goods statistics is compiled by Eurostat on a monthly basis following a harmonised methodology set out in European regulations (known as the Community concept; and using data collection systems based on both extra-EU and intra-EU (Intrastat) data. According to these regulations, Member States should supply detailed extra-EU trade data to Eurostat six weeks after, aggregated intra-EU data eight weeks after and detailed intra-EU data ten weeks after the end of the reporting month. Eurostat publishes total extra-euro area trade results 50-55 days after the end of the reporting month, while detailed results, broken down by partner and product, become available one month later. It should be noted that extra-euro area results are not as timely as extra-EU data, because the data for the three (four before 2001) EU Member States not participating in the Economic and Monetary Union (namely Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom) become available later. An advanced release calendar for Press releases on External Trade can be found on the Eurostat-website (Euro-indicators). The ECB databank includes series upon agreement with ECB data users. Data required for ad hoc purposes can be downloaded from Comext by the users.

Data presentation - Detailed description

Detailed documentation on trade can be found on the ECB website

Methodological information
Time period


Frequency of data collection

Only monthly series. Quarterly and annual data can be derived from the monthly data by simple addition of the values, and by averages for indices.

Classification system

Treatment of goods in transit Some Member States do not record any transaction for goods they consider to be transit trade. This involves imported goods, which are re-exported either immediately after their arrival or after the customs declaration has been made. In intra-EU Community statistics two transactions would be recorded: one for import and one for export.

Statistical concepts and definitions

For information about the naming convention (series key dimensions and metadata), refer to the TRD underlying DSD (ECB_TRD1) maintained by the ECB.

Statistical processing

Eurostat carries out working day/seasonal adjustments of Member States series and then aggregates the results to build EMU and EU totals (indirect method). Hence it is possible that Eurostat’s seasonally adjusted series differ from Member States’ seasonally adjusted series. The seasonal adjustment is performed by using the JDEMETRA 2.0.0 software as recommended by the ESS guidelines. Eurostat reviews all the ARIMA models once a year when a new reference year becomes available. Eurostat estimates the seasonal factors (for the whole series) once a month and the models" performance is checked before the new reference monthly data are released. If deemed necessary, models can be fine-tuned or more drastically changed all over the year.

Administrative Information

TRD - Eurostat External Trade Statistics

Data source


Contact organisation

European Central Bank

Dissemination format - publications

The monthly data are published approximately 46 days after the end of the reference month.

Technical Information

Download the series catalogue containing a full list of series and associated metadata of the dataset TRD in CSV format (zipped)

Dataset last update
15 June 2024 05:11 CEST
Metadata last update
14 March 2024 10:22 CET