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Trade Deficit Widens, Once Again More Than Consensus

It's a never-ending trade deficit story. And the pace is accelerating.

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the goods and services trade deficit was $57.6 billion in February, up $0.9 billion from $56.7 billion in January. The bureau revised January slightly wider, from $56.6 billion as originally reported.

Exports, Imports, and Balance

  • February exports were $204.4 billion, $3.5 billion more than January exports.
  • February imports were $262.0 billion, $4.4 billion more than January imports.
  • The February increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $0.3 billion to $77.0 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of $0.6 billion to $19.4 billion.
  • Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit increased $21.1 billion, or 22.7 percent, from the same period in 2017.
  • Year-to-date, exports increased $22.4 billion or 5.9 percent. Imports increased $43.6 billion or 9.1 percent.

By Country

  • The deficit with Mexico increased $1.0 billion to $6.6 billion in February. Exports decreased less than $0.1 billion to $21.9 billion and imports increased $0.9 billion to $28.5 billion.
  • The deficit with Germany increased $0.4 billion to $6.7 billion in February. Exports decreased $0.2 billion to $4.7 billion and imports increased $0.2 billion to $11.3 billion.
  • The deficit with Canada decreased $1.2 billion to $0.4 billion in February. Exports increased $1.2 billion to $26.1 billion and imports increased less than $0.1 billion to $26.4 billion.
  • The deficit with China decreased $0.8 billion to $34.7 billion in February. Exports increased $0.2 billion to $10.7 billion and imports decreased $0.6 billion to $45.4 billion.

Expect more screams from Trump.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

But, if budget deficits don't matter, why do trade deficits? Donny?

Not to worry, we are simply spending ourselves rich.

LOL...What happened to that 5% first quarter GDP growth? We'll be lucky now to get 2%.

And higher interest rates (stronger dollar) will certainly not help.

I was trying to figure out what I would buy from America if I were China other than bonds since we won’t let them buy strategic assets such as technology or oil companies. In the past they have bought some real estate, but if I remember correctly, they paid way too much for some trophy type assets so that didn’t work and they were embarrassed as they absolutely hate to lose face. Obviously we wouldn’t let them buy any of our defense contractors. Then I think I would maybe try to buy a company in the healthcare industry such as Johnson and Johnson. Just the mere rumor of that would probably cause Trump’s blood pressure to shoot up.So China is already upset by all this having maybe several trillion dollars with nothing but bonds to buy, so what would u buy Mish if you were in China’s shoes?

I just thought of this. I wonder if they might b interested in buying some of our mining companies such as Newmont?

Mish. It is funny your brought up trade with both Germany and China.

Germany actually has a trade SURPLUS with China.

Just how DID THEY DO THAT? Is Germany just one happy free trade country with no tariffs, regulations and not caring about their industry, jobs and economy?

Here is a hint. They religiously protect their manufacturing base.

Now that would be a pretty good article for you.

2banana believe it or not I think that maybe 15 or 20 years ago, a guess, before joining the Euro, their currency the Dmark had shot way up hurting their exports so they were able to get their entire workforce to take a pay cut allowing them to compete and get their exports growing again. Obviously they have a great relationship between the executives and the labor force to be able to pull this off~if I’m right about this.

Germany will eventually pay the piper heavily - When Italy leaves the Eurozone and defaults

Yeah yeah yeah. Someday the sky will fall on our heads too. But if we follow the disastrous prescriptions of you and your Wall Street friends, everything will be OK. Got it.

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