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Economy in Brief

U.S. Int'l Trade Deficit in Goods Sets New Record in March
by Tom Moeller  April 27, 2022

• Export gain is firm.

• Import surge is broad-based.

The advance estimate of the U.S. international trade deficit in goods deteriorated to a record $125.32 billion in March from $106.35 billion in February. A $105.0 billion deficit had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. Exports of goods increased 7.2% (18.1% y/y) following a 1.7% February rise. Imports gained 11.5% (25.6% y/y) after increasing 0.6% in February.

The March increase in exports reflected a 3.1% (22.0% y/y) rise in non-auto consumer goods which followed a 6.7% February rise. Exports of foods, feeds & beverages rose 4.7% last month (11.3% y/y) about the same as in the prior month. Industrial supplies & materials exports rose 12.3% last month (30.9% y/y) after rising 3.0%. Exports of autos & parts rose 8.4% (1.5% y/y) following a 2.3% decline. Capital goods exports improved 1.7% in March (9.4% y/y) after falling 1.5% in February.

Imports increased as industrial supplies & materials strengthened 15.0% in March (48.1% y/y) after rising 5.5% in February. Nonauto consumer goods imports improved 13.6% (25.8% y/y) following a 0.7% rise. Imports of autos & parts gained 12.0% (8.0% y/y) which came after a 9.9% decline. Capital goods imports rose 7.6% (18.3% y/y), after a 1.4% gain. Increasing by 6.2% in March (25.1% y/y) were imports of foods, feeds & beverages which followed February's 3.0% decline.

The advance international trade data can be found in Haver's USECON database. The expectation figure is from the Action Economics Forecast Survey, which is in AS1REPNA.

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