US Trade Gap Slightly Higher than Expected

The trade deficit in the United States widened to USD 43.5 billion in September 2017 from an upwardly revised USD 42.8 billion in August and compared to market expectations of a USD 43.2 billion gap. Exports rose 1.1 percent to the highest since December of 2014 while imports increased at a slightly faster 1.2 percent.

Exports went up 1.1 percent month-over-month to USD 196.8 billion, reaching the highest value since December of 2014. Exports of goods increased USD 1.8 billion to USD 130.6 billion, also the highest since December of 2014: industrial supplies and materials rose USD 1.9 billion; crude oil went up USD 1.1 billion; nonmonetary gold increased USD 0.3 billion and other goods rose USD 0.8 billion. In contrast, sales of consumer goods decreased 0.2 billion and pharmaceutical preparations went down USD 1.0 billion. Exports of services increased USD 0.3 billion to a record high of USD 66.2 billion in September, with transport rising USD 0.3 billion.

Imports jumped 1.2 percent month-over-month to USD 240.3 billion, recovering from an upwardly revised 0.2 percent drop in August. Imports of goods increased USD 2.4 billion to USD 196.0 billion: capital goods surged USD 1.5 billion; semiconductors increased USD 0.5 billion; civilian aircraft rose USD 0.3 billion; industrial supplies and materials went up USD 1.1 billion and other petroleum products increased USD 0.7 billion. In contrast, purchases of automotive vehicles, parts, and engines decreased USD 0.6 billion and those of passenger cars fell USD 0.5 billion. Imports of services increased USD 0.4 billion to USD 44.3 billion in September: transport went up USD 0.3 billion.

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, exports went up to OPEC (26.8 percent), Japan (10.3 percent) and the European Union (3.8 percent) but fell to Mexico (-3.7 percent), China (-1.1 percent) and Canada (-0.2 percent). Imports declined from all main import patners, namely China (-0.8 percent), Canada (-2.4 percent) and  Mexico (-4.6 percent). As a result, the US trade deficit narrowed with all main trading partners: China (USD -34.6 billion from USD -34.89 billion), the EU (USD -11.4 billion from USD -12.4 billion); Mexico (USD -5.7 billion from USD -6.2 billion); Japan (USD -4.8 billion from USD -6.5 billion) and Canada (USD -0.25 billion from USD -0.8 billion). 

US Trade Gap Slightly Higher than Expected

BEA | Joana Taborda |
11/3/2017 1:38:36 PM