Trade deficit decreases in September

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By: Joe Kafchinski

The U.S. international trade deficit decreased to $44.0 billion in September 2010, as exports increased and imports decreased. While exports increased slightly, from $153.6 billion to $154.1 billion, imports were down $2.0 billion to $198.1 billion.

The increase in exports was driven by a $0.7 billion increase in exports of civilian aircraft and a record-high $46.5 billion in exports of services.

The import change was driven by decreases of $1.9 billion in consumer goods and $1.4 billion in automotive vehicles, parts, and engines. Despite the overall decrease in imports, September did set record highs for imports of capital goods ($39.9 billion) and foods, feeds, and beverages ($7.8 billion).

September’s trade deficit with China ($27.8 billion) was down slightly from last month’s record high deficit. It was the third highest single-month deficit with China, trailing only August 2010 ($28.0 billion) and October 2008 ($27.9 billion).

Through September, the 2010 trade deficit of $379.1 billion is 40% larger than the 2009 deficit through September ($270.2 billion). Exports have increased 17.5% to $1.35 trillion and imports have increased 21.9% to $1.73 trillion over the same time period.

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