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India's August trade deficit narrows to $17.4 billion

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's trade deficit narrowed to $17.4 billion in August from a five year high of $18.02 billion hit in July, the trade ministry said on Friday, helped by a pick up in exports after a fall in the rupee.

In August, merchandise exports rose 19.21 percent from a year earlier to $27.84 billion, after a gain of 14.32 percent in July.

Imports grew 25.41 percent last month to $45.24 billion due to higher oil imports, which rose 51.62 percent to $11.83 billion from a year earlier.

(Reporting by Manoj Kumar, Editing by Alasdair Pal)