US trade deficit expands during April 2017

Imports and Exports | | MIC Customs Solutions |

The US experienced an expansion of its trade deficit during April 2017.

US government figures have shown that the country's trade deficit grew during April 2017, reaching 5.2 per cent for the month.

Commerce Department data indicates that the trade gap increased to $47.6 billion (€42.35 billion) in April, up from a revised $45.3 billion in March, and higher than economists' forecasts of a figure closer to $46.5 billion.

Exports dropped by 0.3 per cent to $191 billion, due to falling overseas demand for autos and consumer goods, while imports rose 0.8 per cent to $238.6 billion on the back of the consumer goods and capital equipment markets.

Of note was the fact that the US is yet to make progress on cutting its deficits with China, Mexico and Germany, despite this having been identified as a priority by the Trump administration.

It is expected that this trend will restrain the pace of US economic growth this quarter, and means the country remains on track to post a bigger trade deficit in 2017 than in 2016.

However, Andrew Hunter, an economist at Capital Economics, noted: "The headwind from the dollar's prior appreciation has now faded, and the survey data still suggest that real export growth should pick up again before long."