By John Sperry
In May, the Nation’s international trade deficit increased for the second consecutive month to $45.0 billion from $40.1 billion in April (revised), as imports increased and exports declined. Imports increased $4.4 billion to $232.1 billion, primarily driven by $1.0 billion increases in both industrial supplies and materials and consumer goods. Meanwhile, exports declined $0.5 billion to $187.1 billion primarily due to decreases in consumer goods ($1.2 billion) and industrial supplies and materials ($0.9 billion).
Automotive Trade Sets Records
Automotive vehicles, parts, and engines were highlighted this month setting both record high imports ($26.0 billion) and exports ($13.1 billion). The graph below tracks import and export levels for automotive vehicles, parts, and engines from May 2006 to May 2013. As seen below, both imports and exports have more than doubled since achieving decade lows in January 2009 for exports ($5.4 billion) and in May 2009 for imports ($10.2 billion). For historical automotive vehicles, parts, and engines data use the following links for exports and imports.