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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Trade Deficit declines in May to $48.7 Billion

by Calculated Risk on 7/11/2012 08:30:00 AM

The Department of Commerce reported:

[T]otal May exports of $183.1 billion and imports of $231.8 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $48.7 billion, down from $50.6 billion in April, revised. May exports were $0.4 billion more than April exports of $182.7 billion. May imports were $1.6 billion less than April imports of $233.3 billion.
The trade deficit was at the consensus forecast of $48.7 billion.

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

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

Exports increased in May and imports decreased. Exports are 10% above the pre-recession peak and up 4% compared to May 2011; imports are at the pre-recession peak, and up about 4% compared to May 2011.

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

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 $107.91 per barrel in May, down from $109.94 per barrel in April. This will decline further in June. The trade deficit with China increased to $26 billion in May, up from $24.9 billion in May 2011. Once again most of the trade deficit is due to oil and China.

Exports to the euro area were $17 billion in May, up from $16.4 billion in May 2011; so the euro area recession didn't lead to less US exports to the euro area in May.