South Korea earned a trade surplus of $4.89 billion in October as monthly exports hit a record $50.5 billion, up 7.3 percent year-on-year, data showed Friday. The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy reported said October exports were spurred by higher shipments to the United States and Europe. October imports rose 5.1 percent from the same month of last year to $45.61 billion. The October surplus compared with a surplus of $3.73 billion in the same month of last year and $3.68 billion in September. The latest figures helped South Korea post a trade surplus for the 21st consecutive month, Yonhap News reported. It was also the first time when exports rose over the $50 billion mark. "Exports to the United States and China continued to grow with shipments to the European Union significantly increasing amid the eurozone's economic recovery," the Ministry said. Exports to the United States were up 23.2 percent on-year, and those to European Union rose 16 percent. Information-technology products, such as semiconductors and automobiles helped boost October exports. The ministry expects exports to continue growing during for the rest of the year.