Saturday, 23 June, 2018

US Trade Deficit Unexpectedly Narrows To $46.2 Billion In April

Aerial view of a container cargo ship exporting goods China's May Exports Hold Up, Imports Surge on Robust Demand
Russell Knight | 08 June, 2018, 19:10

The U.S. trade deficit fell to a seven-month low in April as exports rose to a record high, lifted by an increase in shipments of industrial materials and soybeans.

If the real trade deficit trend is maintained, then trade could help to contribute to the US gross domestic product for the second quarter after a neutral impact for the first three months of the year.

Canada's exports hit an all-time high in April, helping to push the country's overall trade deficit down for the month, Statistics Canada reported Wednesday.

The agency said the import value of USA goods that may be subject to Canada's proposed tariffs was $19.4 billion in 2017.

The April decrease in the goods and services deficit reflected a decrease in the goods deficit of $1.0 billion to $68.3 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of less than $0.1 billion to $22.1 billion. In terms of volume, exports grew by a slightly less pronounced 1.2 percent.

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Meanwhile, imports fell 2.5 per cent in April to $50.5 billion as imports of motor vehicles and parts and consumer goods fell. The U.S. trade deficit with China fell sharply because of a drop in imports, but the decline is probably unrelated to pending tariffs on Chinese goods.

His trade battles with China, Europe, Mexico and others are an effort to make those countries buy more United States goods and force down the deficit, which Trump sees as a job killer and threat to the American industrial base. Other transport equipment imports also fell, declining 3.9 percent in April, after three straight monthly gains.

Year-to-date, however, the United States trade gap with China was still up 10.4%, matching a the general trend of the last nine years Deficits also narrowed with Canada and Mexico in the latest month.

"One is hard-pressed as to not concur that the United States economy not only remains on solid footing, but is likely to show an accelerated pace of growth in the second quarter", said Sam Bullard, a senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, North Carolina. German Chancellor Angela Merkel previewed the dynamics by telling Germany's parliament that "it is apparent that we have a serious problem with multilateral agreements here, and so there will be contentious discussions". This article is strictly for informational purposes only.

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