(Jeff Cox – CNBC)
The U.S. trade deficit in goods jumped to end 2018 amid a surge in imports, a move that could cause fourth-quarter economic growth estimates to be lowered, according an advanced look from the Census Bureau on Wednesday.
December saw a $79.5 billion goods deficit, up 12.8 percent from the $70.5 billion in November. The move came amid a $4 billion decline in exports, to $135.7 billion, and a $5 billion increase in imports, to $215.2 billion.
The Census report does not include services.
Trade deficits continued to grow throughout the year for the U.S. despite President Donald Trump's moves to curb the shortfall through tariffs. The White House and China are in the middle of negotiations aimed at beating a March 1 deadline after which more aggressive tariffs could take effect. Trump, however, said it's unlikely the U.S. would amp up the tariffs if the deadline isn't met. Click here to read more.
- U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services – Current Release (BEA)
- GDP, Q4 and Annual 2018 – Initial Estimate (BEA)
- Trump Keeps Claiming the Trade Deficit is Going Down. It’s Not. (Washington Post)
- Why Trump’s Effort to Narrow the Trade Gap Has Flopped So Far (Wall Street Journal)
- U.S. Goods Trade Deficit Deteriorates; Factory Orders Edge Up (Reuters)
- Podcast: Steve Ballmer on the U.S. Trade Deficit, China’s Role, and the Impact on the Economy (Numbers Geek)