US goods trade deficit hits record in November


Shipping containers, including one labelled China Shipping and another Italia, are stacked at the Paul W Conley Container Terminal in Boston, Massachusetts, US, May 9, 2018. — Reuters/File
Shipping containers, including one labelled “China Shipping” and another “Italia”, are stacked at the Paul W Conley Container Terminal in Boston, Massachusetts, US, May 9, 2018. — Reuters/File
  • Goods trade deficit widened last month by 17.5% to $97.8 billion.
  • Goods exports declined 2.1%, while imports rose by 4.7%.
  • Wholesale inventories climbed 1.2%, retail inventories 2%.

The US trade deficit in goods mushroomed to a record in November as imports surged and exports slipped.

The goods trade deficit widened last month by 17.5% to $97.8 billion from $83.2 billion in October, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday. That exceeds the previous record deficit set in September of $97 billion.

Goods exports declined 2.1%, while imports rose by 4.7%. The report also showed wholesale inventories climbed 1.2% last month. Retail inventories increased 2.0%.

Retail inventories, excluding autos, which go into the calculation of gross domestic product, edged up by 1.3%

The economy grew at a 2.3% annualised rate in the third quarter, a step-down from earlier in the year but activity has rebounded in the fourth quarter.

Trade has been a drag on gross domestic product growth for five straight quarters, while inventories added to output in the third quarter.



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