Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Trade Deficit increased in October to $42.2 Billion

by Bill McBride on 12/11/2012 08:30:00 AM

The Department of Commerce reported:

[T]otal October exports of $180.5 billion and imports of $222.8 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $42.2 billion, up from $40.3 billion in September, revised. October exports were $6.8 billion less than September exports of $187.3 billion. October imports were $4.9 billion less than September imports of $227.6 billion.
The trade deficit was smaller than the consensus forecast of $42.8 billion.

The first graph shows the monthly U.S. exports and imports in dollars through October 2012.

U.S. Trade Exports Imports Click on graph for larger image.

Both exports and imports decreased in October. US trade has slowed recently.

Exports are 9% above the pre-recession peak and up 1.0% compared to October 2011; imports are 4% below the pre-recession peak, and down 0.8% compared to October 2011.

The second graph shows the U.S. trade deficit, with and without petroleum, through October.

U.S. Trade Deficit The blue line is the total deficit, and the black line is the petroleum deficit, and the red line is the trade deficit ex-petroleum products.

Oil averaged $99.75 in October, up from $98.88 per barrel in September. The trade deficit with China increased to $29.5 billion in October, up from $28.1 billion in October 2011. Most of the trade deficit is still due to oil and China.

The trade deficit with the euro area was $8.9 billion in October, up from $7.1 billion in October 2011. It appears the eurozone recession is impacting trade.

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