Fancy a Pint?

By: Stephen Jackson

“He is a wise man who invented beer.” –Plato

Some may have different views on beer, good or bad, it’s a national and international phenomenon. While I do not think many would argue with me about this truth, I want to prove it to you by backing it up with numbers – after all, we are numbers people here! Let me take you through some statistics available here at Census, showing both National Economic Census data available on American Fact Finder and International Trade data available on USA Trade Online.

First, let’s take a look at the Economic Census for 2007 and 2012 to view the growth in establishments making beer.  Under the NAICS code of 312120 – “Breweries” is identified as “industry that comprises establishments primarily engaged in brewing beer, ale, malt liquors and nonalcoholic beer”.  The published number of establishments for 2007 was 398. These 398 establishments reported a total value of sales, shipments, receipts, revenues, or business done as being worth $21.2 billion . Not too bad, huh?! You’re right, that is pretty good for 2007, but in just 5 short years these numbers jumped to show the increased interest in beer. In 2012 the breweries showed total establishments at 869, and annual sales, shipments, receipts, revenues, or business done at $28.3 billion.

Beer Data

Okay, so that is what we are brewing here at home, but what’s going on elsewhere in the world? Let’s look at some international trade data on beer as defined by Harmonized System (HS) code 220300 “beer made from malt” (without additives) spanning 2007-2012. First on the export side of the data, the thirst for our beer grew internationally, raising the value from $251.4 million being exported in 2007, to $448.4 million in 2012. Canada and Mexico were the largest consumers of our beer exports claiming the top spots in all five years. Imports did see an increase over the same period, but not as significant as the export side. In 2007 imports of beer were $3.6 billion (we like to drink more beer than we like to ship out), with this number increasing to $3.7 billion in 2012.

Beer Data 2

Posted in Foreign Trade Data | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

December 2014, Trade Deficit Increased

By: Henock Kebede

The trade deficit in goods and services increased by the highest margin on record ($6.8 billion) to $46.6 billion in December, a 17.1% increase from November ($39.8 billion, revised). The increase in the deficit reflects a decrease of $1.5 billion in exports and an increase of $5.3 billion in imports. Among the drivers for the increase in imports are record highs for non-petroleum imports ($173.2 billion) and imports of services ($41.2 billion). To view the full release, please click here.

In addition to the monthly data, this month’s release features the annual data for 2014.

Our “Annual Trade Highlights” page provides information changes from the previous year on both a percentage and dollar basis, and also indicates the last time a larger change occurred. For example, the percent change in the goods and services balance was the highest since the change from 2010-2011 at 6.0%. 2014 also saw record highs for exports of goods and services ($2.3 trillion), exports of goods ($1.6 trillion) and the lowest quantity of crude oil imports (2.7 billion barrels) since 1993 (2.5 billion barrels).

The U.S. had record trade deficits with China ($342.6 billion) and the European Union ($141.1 billion) in 2014 while having record surpluses with South/Central America ($34.4 billion) and Singapore ($14.1 billion). These are just some of the highlights; you can see the complete list on our “Annual Trade Highlights” page here.

Posted in Foreign Trade Data | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Hot off the press!!! 2015 Training Schedule

By: Stephen Jackson

The release of our 2015 AES Compliance Seminar and AESPcLink Workshop is here!

What is an AES Compliance Seminar?

The AES Compliance Seminar is an all day program where experts from the Census Bureau and Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) discuss export regulatory topics such as:

  • Mandatory filing requirements
  • How to avoid common penalties and seizure of cargo
  • BIS export control requirements
  • How to classify your product by Schedule B number and Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCN)
  • Best practices for maintaining compliance with export regulations

*The AES Compliance Seminar qualifies for 7 Certified Export Specialist (CES) Credits*

What is the AESPcLink Workshop?

The AESPcLink Workshop is a 3 ½ hour program that provides hands-on experience with the reporting of Electronic Export Information (EEI) through the AESPcLink system. Highlights from the training include:

  • Learn how to use AESPcLink
  • Practice reporting export shipments
  • Create shipment templates
  • Learn how to become AES certified

*The AESPcLink Workshop qualifies for 3.5 Certified Export Specialist (CES) Credits*

The Upcoming 2015 schedule is as follows:

  • Los Angeles, CA                                                Feburary 24 & 25, 2015
  • Long Beach, CA                                                Feburary 26 & 26, 2015
  • Ft. Lauderdale, FL                                           March 3 & 4, 2015
  • Ft. Lauderdale, FL – Spanish                        March 5 & 6, 2015 **CANCELLED**
  • Seattle, WA                                                        April 15 & 16, 2015
  • Chicago, IL                                                         May 6 & 7, 2015
  • Boston, MA                                                        May 20 & 21, 2015
  • Savannah, GA                                                    June 3 & 4, 2015
  • Philadelphia, PA                                               June 9 & 10,2015
  • San Francisco, CA                                            August 9 & 11, 2015
  • Laredo, TX – Spanish                                      October 7 & 8, 2015
  • Virginia Beach, VA                                          November 4 & 5, 2015
  • Tampa, FL                                                         December 9 & 10, 2015

For more information on these training opportunities please go to:

Check out our Events Calendar HERE to check the dates on a calendar.

Posted in Foreign Trade Regulations | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Birthday Global Reach!

By: Rosanna Torres

Five years ago, a small team at the Birthday CakeForeign Trade Division decided it was time to socialize the Census Bureau’s involvement in the trade industry through this blog.  We joined the social media revolution.

Since then, the Division changed names (now known as the International Trade Management Division), people have come and gone, but the blog still lives on thanks to your subscriptions. We are happy to report that more than 200,000 users have benefited in some measure from the information our talented staff provides weekly.  With day one as a baseline, Global Reach has had over half a million page views and the loyalty of over 11K+ subscribers.

To all those who benefit or contribute to use this training tool, congratulations.  We’re looking forward to another great year ahead!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Determining Value & License Value

By: Daniel Cariello

Are you in the business of exporting licensed shipments? It sure can be tricky! If you haven’t heard already, requirements for filing licensed goods in the Automated Export System (AES) recently changed.  In addition to reporting the value, you are required to report license value in the AES.  Let’s take a look at how to determine value and license value to ensure you avoid costly mistakes.

Value vs License Value


Just to remind you, value is a mandatory data element in the AES.  Value = selling price OR cost of goods (if not sold) + inland or domestic freight, insurance, and other charges to the U.S. seaport, airport, or land border port of export.

License Value

License value, or Licensable Value in the AES, is a conditional data element. This means if your shipment requires an export license, you must report the value designated on the export license that corresponds to the commodity being exported.

The example below includes a shipment requiring an export license.  Notice that the value is slightly higher than the licensable value. This is due to the inclusion of domestic freight and insurance costs, which is included in value only.

Licence Value 1How does value and licensable value look in the AES?

Licence Value 2

If you have questions regarding value or license value, please contact the Trade Regulations Branch at (800)-549-0595, Option 3 or e-mail


Posted in Export Filing, Foreign Trade Regulations | Tagged , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

November 2014, Trade Deficit Decreased

By: Carlann Unger

The trade deficit in goods and services continued to decrease. In November, the deficit was $39.0 billion, down $3.2 billion from October. The decrease in the deficit reflects a $2.0 billion decrease in exports and a larger $5.2 billion decrease in imports. Exports decreased to $196.4 billion, mainly driven by a $2.3 billion decrease in capital goods. Imports decreased to $235.4 billion, mainly driven by a $4.6 billion decrease in industrial supplies and materials. To view the full release click here.

At $11.4 billion, the November petroleum deficit was the lowest since December 2003. The November imports of petroleum, at $23.1 billion, contributed to the decrease, as they were the lowest since August 2009. In November, both the import average price per barrel of crude oil and quantity of crude oil imports were highlights. The import average price per barrel of crude oil, at $82.95, was the lowest since December 2010. The November quantity of crude oil imports, at 189 million barrels, was the lowest since February 1994. To view more historical data on U.S. Imports of Crude Oil click here.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Happy New Year!

By: Stephen Jackson

On behalf of the International Trade Management Division (ITMD) and the Economic Indicator Division (EID) of the U.S. Census Bureau, we would like to say Happy New Year!

We hope that you have enjoyed your holiday season, and look forward to working with you in 2015. This past year we had some significant changes to the export process and we are encouraged that many of you found this Blog as an information source to keep updated on the changes. We are continuing to evolve,  and making the necessary changes to improve our Regulations, AESDirect and the critical statistics we provide you.

Let’s take a moment to highlight a few key products to keep in mind throughout 2015.

USA TradeUSATradeOnline – Access current and cumulative U.S. export and import data for over 9,000 export commodities and 17,000 import commodities. USA Trade Online provides trade statistics using the Harmonized System (HS) up to the 10-digit level and the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) commodity classification codes up to the 6-digit level.

AESDirect 1AESDirect – This FREE online program allows exporters to file their Electronic Export Information in a timely and efficient manner to the Automated Export System.

Subscribe to Mailing Lists – The ITMD & EID offer multiple subscriptions ranging from Trade Data , AES  Updates and Other Partnership Agency request for broadcasts. These mailing subscriptions provide you with the timeliest information from the Census Bureau, and act as a key means of communication with the Export Community.

We hope that you continue to take advantage of the great resources made available to you from our International Trade Management Division. As a reminder for your Electronic Export Information, please remember to report the Estimated Date of Export in the Automated Export System with the correct year, so after you pop the cork, please report the year 2015.

Posted in Export Filing, Foreign Trade Data, Foreign Trade Regulations, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s so hard to say goodbye…

By: Omari Wooden

After 36 years of civil service at the Joe and BrendaU.S Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, Joe Cortez is retiring at the end of the year. Joe worked on three decennial censuses but for the last 12 years, he worked in the Foreign Trade Division (FTD)/International Trade Management Division (ITMD). Joe is currently the International Trade Ombudsman and previously the Chief for the Regulations, Outreach and Education Branch.

Joe worked tirelessly with the trade community to ensure that their concerns were addressed. In addition, he trained exporters and forwarders on complying with export regulations and resolving AES concerns. This training was maximized by Joe’s bilingual efforts with the Hispanic community assisting exporters all across the nation. He accomplished this while working with export enforcement agencies to develop export regulations that facilitated trade while ensuring that our nation’s security concerns are met. Joe also assisted the trade to resolve penalty and export enforcement issues regarding the Foreign Trade Regulations.

In addition, after 41 years of service, Brenda Jeffries is retiring. For the last 19 years, Brenda worked in the FTD/ITMD in the Regulations, Outreach and Education Branch. She played a critical role in laying the foundation in the early years of the AES compliance seminars. Over the years, Brenda has provided exceptional customer service to the trade community through emails, phone calls, data requests and voluntary self-disclosures.

With a combined 77 years of civil service, Joe and Brenda have been invaluable to the efforts of the Census Bureau. It has been a wonderful pleasure working with them over the years. We wish both of them the best on their new endeavors.

If you require assistance with any of the tasks that Joe worked on, you may contact Omari Wooden at until the Trade Ombudsman position is filled. If you require regulatory assistance, you may contact the Trade Regulations Branch on 800-549-0595 Option #3.

Congratulations Joe! Congratulations Brenda! Have a wonderful retirement!

Posted in Foreign Trade Regulations | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

NEW: The Manufacturing and International Trade Report

By: Rebecca DeNale

On December 18, 2014, the U.S. Census cargo shipBureau released the 2012 Manufacturing and International Trade Report (MITR) . This new annual report contains manufacturing data on the value of product shipments. The data are published on a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) basis from the 2012 Economic Census Industry Series. The MITR also includes official U.S. export and import merchandise trade statistics.

car plantThe MITR will, for the first time, provide a comprehensive comparison between detailed manufacturing product class data and associated import and export data.

In August 2015, the Census Bureau plans to release the 2013 MITR. The report will present manufacturing product data from the 2013 Annual Survey of Manufactures and 2012 Economic Census Summary Series, with new and revised official U.S. export and import merchandise trade statistics.

For information on manufacturing data, contact: 1-800-201-4647, Option 1

For information on international trade data, contact: 1-800-549-0595, Option 4

Posted in Foreign Trade Data | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I do not own a company. How can I register for AESDirect?

By: Eric Gauthier

The holidays are fast approaching and you are trying to send one of those new electronic devices to a relative out of the United States. You go to your post office and they tell you that since the value of your gift is over $2,500 per classification code, you need to report this export shipment through AESDirect. However, when you go to the AESDirect  website, you see that the registration form talks about companies and Filer IDs. You start to wonder if you need to complete this since the website seems to be mostly designed for companies.

Please note that the filing requirement for export shipments valued over $2,500 per Schedule B applies to both companies and individuals. You are required to comply with this regulation whether you frequently have export transactions or this is an “once-in-a-lifetime” situation.

What do you need to be able to register and create an account? AESDirect registrants should be physically located in the United States. If you are not, you will need to contact a U.S. based  agent or freight forwarder to submit your Electronic Export Information (EEI).

Now, as an individual, how do you complete the requested information?

Eric Post for Sign up1


  1. Under the Company Information section, please enter your name under the Company Name field. For the Filer ID Number, please provide an Employer Identification Number (EIN). If you do not have an EIN, you can request one online from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) through the “Apply for an Employer ID Number” link. If you are not sure what options to select when requesting an EIN, our Regulations staff has prepared a presentation that you can use as a guide. Please note that it is prohibited to use a Social Security Number for an AESDirect registration or filing.
  2. The Account Administrator is the main contact point for the account, which should be you. Please enter your name and contact information under this section. Under the Administrator Address, please enter your personal address. It should be your U.S. physical address and not a P.O. Box number.
  3. Under the Corporate Office and Corporate Contacts section, select the checkboxes to confirm that the address and contact are the same as previously reported. You would need to determine if you are a United States Principal Party in Interest (USPPI) or forwarding agent. If you are filing directly for the export you are sending, please select USPPI. If you are filing on behalf of someone else, please select Freight Forwarder. After this, you should be able to complete the remaining fields and certification statements.

Once you complete and successfully submit the form, you will receive an email to set up your username and password and continue with the registration process. Then you will have full access to the AESDirect application and be able to complete the required EEI with the resources we have available on the website.

This information should help you  when trying to register for AESDirect and have you on your way to file an export for the first time! If you require additional assistance, you can reach our Data Collection Branch at 1-800-549-0595 Option 1 or leave us a comment at the bottom.

Posted in Export Filing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments