Archive for the 'International' Category

Detailed Statistics on Trade in Services Coming Soon

With the release of the October edition of the Survey of Current Business, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) will publish the most detailed tables on trade in services by type of service and by area and country. These data represent the final product related to the restructuring of BEA’s international accounts, the most sweeping revamp since 1976.

This annual article (U.S. International Services: Trade in Services and Services Supplied Through Affiliates) provides a broad perspective on services provided by and to the United States in international markets by presenting information on both trade in services and services supplied through the channel of direct investment by affiliates of multinational enterprises. This year’s article will feature restructured tables on U.S. exports and imports of services consistent with those released with the international transactions accounts in June. The statistics on services supplied through affiliates will not be restructured but there will be minor changes to the tables to adopt new terminology.

In addition, these tables will be made available for the first time in BEA’s interactive tables.  This gives users the flexibility to customize their own time series rather than relying on static Excel tables. Templates previewing the structure of the tables are available here.

New information on trade by detailed type of service and by area and country will be available under the restructured trade in services tables.  For example:
• Exports and imports of accounting, auditing, and bookkeeping services by area and country
• Exports and imports of construction by area and country
• Exports and imports of architectural and engineering services by area and country

Also, the analysis in the article has expanded to include statistics on services provided to, and received from, nonresidents by U.S. government agencies, both military and nonmilitary, as part of a new category, “government goods and services n.i.e.” (not included elsewhere).  With this change, this article will now provide detailed information on all U.S. trade in services, not just private services.

These changes have aligned U.S. data more closely with updated international guidelines, such as the sixth edition of the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual. Keeping up with international guidelines makes it easier for users to compare U.S. data with data from our major trade and investment partners.

International Statistical Update: Health- and Education-Related Travel Now Part of Travel Services

You may have noticed some data on international travel services look a little bit different. With the release of the monthly trade report on June 4, spending on health- and education-related travel are now counted in the travel services category. Previously, both were included in a category called “other personal services.”

Expenditures on goods and services by border, seasonal, and other short-term workers, which were also previously included in other private services, are reclassified to travel as well.

While this change alone will not affect the overall trade balance, the category measuring travel services – both imports and exports – will be larger. However, BEA will also report quarterly on health- and education-related travel separately from other more traditional business and personal travel so that users can track travel spending in several ways. You can see the new travel services category as well as the subcategories in a new table that will be available on June 18. A template is available now.

This change is part of the Comprehensive Restructuring of BEA’s International Economic Accounts, which we discussed in a recent blog post.

An example of health-related travel is when a foreign person travels to the United States for surgery. In this case, health-related travel exports would include the cost of medical procedures the person receives, in addition to any accommodations and other expenses he or she incurs in the United States.

An example of education-related travel is when a foreign person travels to the U.S. to attend school here. In this case, education-related travel exports would include all costs the foreign student incurs in the United States, including tuition at a U.S. institution. Like other changes to BEA’s international accounts, moving health- and education-related travel to the travel services category brings the U.S. international accounts into closer harmony with data produced by our trading partners and was a recommendation of the International Monetary Fund’s Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual, 6th edition.