Britain's trade deficit narrowed in September as weak sterling helped drive a rise in exported goods and only a marginal rise in expensive imports.
Exports increased to £29.51bn in September, up from £28.24 in August. A weak pound is a benefit to exporters as the lower exchange rate means their goods a worth more in foreign currencies.
Conversely, imports, which inched up to £40.76bn from £40.59bn, are more costly to ship into the UK.
This gave a total trade deficit of £2.75bn for the month, down from August's of £3.46bn. Britiain's trade balance in goods now stands at a deficit of £11.25bn - narrowing from August's £12.35bn - lower than the forecast deficit of £12.8bn.
Export volumes fall
Quarterly data, however, painted a less upbeat picture of the July-September period as export volumes fell 1.8% on the quarter, while imports rose 1.9%.
Annual growth in export volumes, however, remained at a robust rate of 15% in September.
Ruth Gregory at Capital Economics said: "Surveys suggest this strength should continue, while import growth should slow in line with weakening consumer spending growth.
"So, we remain optimistic that net trade will provide more support to growth in the quarters ahead."
On equity markets, the FTSE 100 remained rooted in negative territory, down 0.33% at 7,459 in mid-morning trade in London.
The pound, however, turned higher - it was up 0.1% against the dollar at $1.3161 and remained flat against the euro at €1.1292.