December U.S. Trade Deficit Rises Sharply

Maersk container shipThe U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported Thursday morning that the U.S. trade deficit for December 2013 totaled $38.7 billion, up from $34.6 billion in November. That is a jump of 11.8%. Economists had expected a deficit of $36 billion.

Total U.S. exports reached $191.3 billion in December, while total imports reached $230 billion. Exports fell by $3.5 billion compared with November, and imports rose by $600 million.

Exports of U.S. goods fell from $137.1 billion in November to $132.8 billion in December, a difference of $4.3 billion. Imports of goods into the United States rose from $191.3 billion in November to $191.6 billion, a rise of $300 million.

Exports of services rose by $800 million in December to $58.5 billion, and imports of services rose by $300 million to $38.4 billion.

For the three months ending in December, the rolling average U.S. trade deficit was $37.4 billion, composed of $193.1 billion in exports and $230.6 billion in imports. The rolling average was $1.4 billion lower than November's rolling average.

The U.S. trade deficit with China dipped $2.4 billion to $24.5 billion in December, while the deficit with OPEC countries fell by $800 million to $4 billion. The trade deficit with Europe rose by $1.2 billion to $11.3 billion. The United States ran trade surpluses with Hong Kong ($3.3 billion), Australia ($1.6 billion), Singapore ($1.2 billion) and Brazil ($1.5 billion).

Filed under: Economy
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