Recent Updates

  • US: Consumer Sentiment (Aug-prelim), Import/Export Prices (Jul)
  • US: Consumer Sentiment Detail (Aug-prelim)
  • US: Vehicle Miles Driven by State (Jun)
  • Bulgaria: Agricultural PPI (Q2) Central Bank Survey (Jul)
  • Blue Chip: Blue Chip Economic Indicators (Aug)
  • more updates...

Economy in Brief

U.S. Trade Deficit Deepened in January
by Tom Moeller March 11, 2005

The U.S. foreign trade deficit in January reversed most of the prior month's improvement and deepened to $58.3B. The December deficit was revised shallower. Consensus expectations had been for a January deficit of $56.5B.

Total exports rose 0.4% following an unrevised 3.2% gain in December. Goods exports rose 0.2% (15.3% y/y). Month to month gains were limited to a 3.5% increase in automotive and a 0.2% up tick in industrial supplies exports. Capital goods exports declined 0.7% (10.0% y/y) and nonauto consumer goods exports fell 2.0% (19.8% y/y).

Services exports rose 1.0% (9.7% y/y) on the strength of higher passenger fares (+22.0% y/y) and increased spending on travel (+14.6% y/y).

Total imports jumped 1.9% following a downwardly revised 0.4% decline in December. Petroleum imports fell for the second month, down 6.3% (+32.5% y/y) as the average price of crude oil fell to $35.35 per bbl. but imports of non-petroleum goods jumped 2.6% (+18.2% y/y). Capital goods imports rose 1.7% (14.7% y/y) and nonauto consumer goods imports surged 6.0% (17.2% y/y).

The US trade deficit with China deepened m/m in January to $15.3B ($162.0B in 2004) but the US trade deficit with Japan improved to $6.2B ($75.2B in 2004). The trade deficit with the Asian NICs more than doubled m/m to $2.3B ($21.9B in 2004). The US trade deficit with the European Union narrowed to $8.1B ($110.0B in 2004) and with OPEC the US trade deficit deepened m/m to $6.1B ($71.9B in 2004).

Remarks by Federal Reserve Board Governor Ben S. Bernanke titled The Global Saving Glut and the U.S. Current Account Deficit can be found here.

Foreign Trade Jan Dec Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Trade Deficit $58.3B $55.7B $45.8B (1/04) $617.1B $496.5B $421.7B
  Exports - Goods & Services 0.4% 3.2% 13.6% 12.4% 4.6% -3.1%
  Imports - Goods & Services 1.9% -0.4% 18.2% 16.3% 8.5% 2.1%
large image