Direction of Trade (ICPSR 7628)

Published: Oct 23, 2014

Principal Investigator(s):
International Monetary Fund


Version V2

These time series data supply detailed information on imports and exports for various countries and geographical areas of the world. Countries are grouped into three main categories: (1) Industrial Countries, (2) Developing Countries, and (3) USSR, Eastern Europe, etc. Along with data from reporting countries, estimates are provided by partner countries for nonreporting countries or for those that are slow to report. A subset of these data (Part 4), containing annual data from 1948 to 1978, is available as well.

International Monetary Fund. Direction of Trade. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2014-10-23.

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South America Papua New Guinea Cambodia Paraguay Kazakhstan Syria Solomon Islands Bahamas Gibralter Montserrat Marshall Islands Mali Panama Guadeloupe Laos Argentina Falkland Islands Africa Seychelles Zambia Belize Bahrain Guinea-Bissau Namibia Finland Comoros Faroe Islands Netherlands Antilles Yemen Eritrea China (Peoples Republic) Madagascar Aruba Ivory Coast Libya Western Samoa Sweden Malawi Poland Jordan Bulgaria Tunisia United Arab Emirates Tuvalu Kenya French Polynesia Lebanon Brunei Djibouti Cuba Azerbaijan Czech Republic Mauritania Saint Lucia Israel San Marino Australia Soviet Union Tajikistan Myanmar Cameroon Cyprus Bermuda Islands Malaysia North America Iceland Global Oman Armenia Gabon Yugoslavia Luxembourg Brazil Algeria Slovenia Antigua and Barbuda Colombia Ecuador Moldova Vanuatu Italy Honduras Micronesia (Federated States) Nauru Haiti Afghanistan Burundi Singapore French Guiana American Samoa Russia Netherlands Martinique Kyrgyzstan Reunion Bhutan Romania Togo Philippines Uzbekistan Asia Democratic Republic of Congo British Virgin Islands Zimbabwe Pacific Ocean Indonesia Dominica Benin Angola Sudan East Timor Portugal New Caledonia North Korea Grenada Greece Cayman Islands Latvia Mongolia Iran Morocco Bosnia-Hercegovina Guatemala Guyana Iraq Chile Nepal Georgia (Republic) Ukraine Tanzania Ghana Anguilla India Canada Maldives Turkey Belgium South Africa Trinidad and Tobago Central African Republic Jamaica Peru Turkmenistan Germany Vietnam (Socialist Republic) Fiji Hong Kong United States Guinea Somalia Chad Sao Tome and Principe Thailand Equatorial Guinea Kiribati Costa Rica Pitcairn Island Kuwait Nigeria Croatia Sri Lanka Uruguay Cook Islands United Kingdom Switzerland Spain Palestine Venezuela Liberia Burkina Faso Swaziland Palau Estonia Gaza Strip Wallis and Futuna South Korea Austria Mozambique El Salvador Guam Lesotho Tonga Hungary Japan Europe Belarus Mauritius Albania New Zealand Senegal Macedonia Ethiopia Egypt Sierra Leone Bolivia Malta Wake Island Saudi Arabia Cape Verde Pakistan Gambia Ireland Qatar Slovakia France Lithuania Saint Kitts-Nevis Niger Rwanda Bangladesh Nicaragua Barbados Norway Botswana Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Macao Denmark Dominican Republic Uganda Mexico Suriname Saint Helena Greenland


ICPSR obtained these data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under the terms of a contract that states that the data are for the sole use of ICPSR and may not be sold or provided to third parties outside of the ICPSR membership. Individuals at institutions that are not members of ICPSR may obtain these data directly from the IMF.

1948 -- 1998

1948 -- 1998

All exports are valued "free on board" (f.o.b.) and all imports "cost, insurance, and freight" (c.i.f.).

Due to an agreement between ICPSR and the IMF, this study is available only to users at ICPSR member institutions. Those who wish to use the study and are at non-member institutions should contact the IMF directly.

Each time series in Part 1 can contain a variable number of logical records. The exact number of records in any time series in this collection is dependent upon the availability of annual, quarterly, and monthly data for trading partners. Approximately 61,000 time series are included in this collection.

ICPSR's subscription with the the IMF for monthly updates of the DIRECTION OF TRADE (ICPSR 7628) series expired with the July 1998 tapes.

Part 1 data are stored in the packed zoned decimal format as distributed by the IMF. A supplemental COBOL processing program is available for use with this data file in the zipped package file ( Datasets 2, 3 and 5 are no longer distributed. Datasets 6, 7 and 8, respectively, comprise the yearly, quarterly, and monthly records as extracted from the IMF data file.

Three datasets have been added to the collection. The new datasets comprise the yearly, quarterly, and monthly records extracted from the IMF data file. The variable extraction was performed using SAS's PROC DATASOURCE. Data files generated by this extraction were subsequently processed using ICPSR's automated production routine. The new data files should be considered as minimally processed as no variable value checks or comparisons were performed. The layout and/or content of the new data files may not match those of the original data files. The codebooks for each new dataset document only the variables in that dataset's data file and should be used in conjunction with the legacy documentation.

The legacy documentation also documents the following IMF studies: DIRECTION OF TRADE (ICPSR S07628), INTERNATIONAL FINANCIAL STATISTICS (ICPSR S07629), BALANCE OF PAYMENTS STATISTICS (ICPSR S08623), and GOVERNMENT FINANCE STATISTICS (ICPSR S08624). The original codebook is part of dataset 1 for all four studies. Dataset 4 was reprocessed and now includes the current suite of ICPSR distribution files. The legacy documentation now distributed with this collection was distributed as the codebook for dataset 4 in previous releases of this study.

The term "country," as used in this dataset, does not in all cases refer to a territorial entity that is a state as understood by international law and practice. The term also covers some territorial entities that are not states but for which statistical data are maintained and provided internationally on a separate and independent basis. Data are expressed in millions of United States dollars.

Approximately 180 countries and geographical areas.

Central bank reports and bulletins, IMF area departments, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, International Labor Organization, IMF Treasurer's Department, the United Nations, the National Bureau of Economic Research, and information from national authorities.

administrative records data

aggregate data

event/transaction data

program source code

survey data

record abstracts



2014-10-23 Three datasets have been added comprising yearly, quarterly, and monthly records extracted from the original IMF data file in part 1 of this collection using SAS's PROC DATASOURCE. The Annual Data: 1948-1978 data file and the yearly, quarterly, and monthly data files have been processed using ICPSR's automated production routine as Part 4, 6, 7, and 8, respectively. These four parts include SPSS, SAS, and Stata setup files, SAS transport (CPORT) file, tab-delimited ASCII data file, R data file, and Variable description and Frequencies. The legacy codebook in Part 4 is now being distributed as a Data Documentation File. The COBOL FUNPACK program previously distributed as part 5 is now included in the zipped package file (

Data for Parts 1, 4, 6, 7 and 8 are not weighted. The data do not contain a weight variable.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

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