UPDATE 1-Argentina's July trade surplus shrinks as exports slump

lunes 24 de agosto de 2015 15:32 GYT

(Adds import and export figures, context)

BUENOS AIRES Aug 24 (Reuters) - Argentina's trade surplus narrowed a more-than-expected 75 percent in July from the same month a year earlier to $204 million, the government said on Monday.

Exports slumped 12 percent to $5.89 billion, underscoring weakness in Argentina's main trade partner Brazil, and imports dropped 4 percent to $5.69 billion as the central bank continued restricting the amount of hard currency available to businesses.

The median forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts was for a surplus of $419 million.

With Argentina's access to global credit markets hampered by a festering debt default, President Cristina Fernandez's government relies on the surplus to boost dollar supplies on the tightly controlled currency market. (Reporting by Buenos Aires newsroom, Writing by Richard Lough; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)