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March 2018 Trade Gap is $49.0 Billion

The U.S. monthly international trade deficit decreased in March 2018 according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the U.S. Census Bureau. The deficit decreased from $57.7 billion in February (revised) to $49.0 billion in March, as exports increased and imports decreased. The previously published February deficit was $57.6 billion. The goods deficit decreased $7.5 billion in March to $69.5 billion. The services surplus increased $1.3 billion in March to $20.5 billion.

trade-march-2018

Exports
Exports of goods and services increased $4.2 billion, or 2.0 percent, in March to $208.5 billion. Exports of goods increased $3.7 billion and exports of services increased $0.4 billion.

  • The increase in exports of goods mostly reflected increases in capital goods($1.9 billion), in foods, feeds, and beverages ($1.0 billion), and in industrial supplies and materials ($0.9 billion).
  • The increase in exports of services mostly reflected increases in maintenance and repair services ($0.1 billion), in travel (for all purposes including education) ($0.1 billion), and in transport ($0.1 billion).

Imports
Imports of goods and services decreased $4.6 billion, or 1.8 percent, in March to $257.5 billion. Imports of goods decreased $3.7 billion and imports of services decreased $0.9 billion.

  • The decrease in imports of goods mostly reflected decreases in capital goods ($1.5 billion), in consumer goods ($0.9 billion), and in industrial supplies and materials ($0.7 billion).
  • The decrease in imports of services mostly reflected decreases in charges for the use of intellectual property ($0.9 billion) and in transport ($0.1 billion). Charges for the use of intellectual property for February included payments for the rights to broadcast the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.

For more information, read the full report.

Real Consumer Spending Increases in March

Personal income increased 0.3 percent in March, the same increase as in February. Personal income Chart 0430Wages and salaries, the largest component of personal income, increased 0.2 percent in March after increasing 0.4 percent in February.

Current-dollar disposable personal income (DPI), after-tax income, increased 0.3 percent in March, the same increase as in February.

Real DPI, income adjusted for taxes and inflation, increased 0.2 percent in March after increasing 0.1 percent in February.

Real consumer spending (PCE), spending adjusted for price changes, increased 0.4 percent in March after decreasing 0.2 percent in February. Spending on durable goods increased 1.1 percent in March after decreasing 0.1 percent in February. PCE prices were unchanged in March after increasing 0.2 percent in February. Excluding food and energy, PCE prices increased 0.2 percent in March, the same increase as in February.

Personal saving rate
Personal saving as a percent of DPI was 3.1 percent in March after 3.3 percent in February.

For more information, read the full report.

Real DPI April30

 

 

GDP Increases in First Quarter

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 2.3 percent in the first quarter of 2018, according to the “advance” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the fourth quarter of 2017, real GDP increased 2.9 percent.

GDP highlights
The increase in real GDP reflected increases in business investment, consumer spending, exports, and inventory investment. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased in the first quarter of 2018.

The increase in business investment reflected increases in structures (notably miningQ2Q Real GDP April27
exploration, shafts, and wells), equipment, and intellectual property products.

The increase in consumer spending reflected an increase in services that was partly offset by a decrease in goods, mainly motor vehicles and parts.

The increase in exports reflected increases in exports of both goods and services.
The increase in inventory investment reflected an increase in nonfarm inventories, notably merchant wholesale industries.

First‐quarter prices
Prices of goods and services purchased by U.S. residents increased 2.8 percent in the first quarter of 2018, after increasing 2.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Food prices increased 0.4 percent in the first quarter following an increase of 0.1 percent
in the fourth quarter of 2017.    Q2Q Percent April 27

Energy prices increased 12.4 percent in the first quarter of 2018 following an increase of 28.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Excluding food and energy, prices increased 2.7 percent in the first quarter of 2018, compared with an increase of 2.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017.

For more information, read the full report.


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