Travel and Tourism Spending Rises in the Third Quarter

Real spending (output) on travel and tourism accelerated in the third quarter of 2017, growing at an annual rate of 6.6 percent after increasing 6.0 percent (revised) in the second quarter, according to new statistics released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

The leading contributors to the acceleration in real spending were traveler accommodations and food and beverage services. Traveler accommodations accelerated, growing 13.5 percent in the third quarter after increasing 3.8 percent (revised) in the second quarter. Food and beverage services increased 0.6 percent after decreasing 1.4 percent (revised) in the previous quarter.


Prices for travel and tourism goods and services decreased 1.1 percent in the third quarter of 2017. This was a smaller decrease than the 3.2 percent (revised) decline in the second quarter. The decrease was largely attributable to the prices of traveler accommodations and passenger air transportation.

Employment in the travel and tourism industries decelerated, growing 1.2 percent in the third quarter of 2017 after increasing 2.1 percent (revised) in the previous quarter. Traveler accommodations was the leading contributor to the deceleration, losing approximately 800 employees in the third quarter of 2017 after adding 6,400 employees in the second quarter. Food and beverage services also contributed to the deceleration.

Due to budget constraints, BEA is discontinuing production of quarterly travel and tourism estimates. Annual estimates, published each June in BEA’s Survey of Current Business, will continue to be produced with support from the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. For more information, read the full report.

October 2017 Trade Gap is $48.7 Billion

The U.S. monthly international trade deficit increased in October 2017 according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the U.S. Census Bureau. The deficit increased from $44.9 billion in September (revised) to $48.7 billion in October, as exports decreased and imports increased. The previously published September deficit was $43.5 billion. The goods deficit increased $3.8 billion in October to $69.1 billion. The services surplus decreased less than $0.1 billion in October to $20.3 billion.

Goods and Service Dec 5

Exports of goods and services decreased less than $0.1 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, in October to $195.9 billion. Exports of goods decreased $0.3 billion and exports of services increased $0.3 billion.

  • The decrease in exports of goods mostly reflected decreases in foods, feeds, and beverages ($1.3 billion) and in capital goods ($1.2 billion). An increase in industrial supplies and materials ($2.6 billion) partly offset the decreases.
  • The increase in exports of services mostly reflected increases in financial services ($0.1 billion) and in other business services ($0.1 billion), which includes research and development services; professional and management services; and technical, trade‐related, and other services.

Imports of goods and services increased $3.8 billion, or 1.6 percent, in October to $244.6 billion. Imports of goods increased $3.5 billion and imports of services increased $0.3 billion.

  • The increase in imports of goods mostly reflected increases in industrial supplies and materials ($1.8 billion), in other goods ($1.1 billion), and in consumer goods ($0.8 billion).
  • The increase in imports of services mostly reflected an increase in transport ($0.3 billion).

For more information, read the full report.


GDP for the U.S. Virgin Islands Increases in 2016

Today, the Bureau of Economic Analysis is releasing estimates of gross domestic product for the U.S. Virgin Islands for 2016, in addition to estimates of GDP by industry and compensation by industry for 2015.  These estimates were developed under the Statistical Improvement Program funded by the Office of Insular Affairs of the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Revised estimates of GDP for 2013 to 2015, as well as revised estimates of GDP by industry and compensation by industry for 2013 and 2014, are presented in this release.

Gross Domestic Product for 2016
The estimates of GDP for the USVI show that real GDP—GDP adjusted to remove price changes—increased 0.9 percent in 2016 after increasing 0.3 percent in 2015. For comparison, real GDP for the United States increased 1.5 percent in 2016 after increasing 2.9 percent in 2015.


The growth in the USVI economy primarily reflected increases in inventory investment and exports of goods. These increases were partly offset by an increase in imports of goods, which is a subtraction item in the calculation of GDP.

Petroleum product and crude oil transactions accounted for the majority of the growth in inventory investment and in exports and imports of goods, reflecting the reopening of an existing oil storage terminal on St. Croix. A new operator took ownership of the facility previously owned by Hovensa and, in 2016, began receiving shipments of petroleum.

For more information, read the full report.

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