Trade Deficit Shrinks to $69.37B in March

The U.S. international trade in goods and services, also known as the FT-900, is published monthly by the Bureau of Economic Analysis with data going back to 1992. The monthly reports include revisions that go back several months. This trade balance measures the difference in value between imported and exported goods and services.

Here is an excerpt from the latest report:

The U.S. goods and services trade deficit decreased in March 2024 according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the U.S. Census Bureau. The deficit decreased from $69.5 billion in February (revised) to $69.4 billion in March, as imports decreased more than exports. The goods deficit increased $0.8 billion in March to $92.5 billion. The services surplus increased $0.9 billion in March to $23.1 billion.

In March, the trade deficit shrunk by 0.1% to $69.37B. The latest reading was better than the forecast of $69.50B. The deficit has expanded by 16.4% compared to one year ago.

Trade Deficit

This indicator is somewhat volatile, with an 8.6% absolute average monthly change. The latest data point saw a 0.1% month-over-month change. Here is a snapshot that gives a better sense of the extreme volatility of this indicator.

Trade Deficit

As mentioned earlier, the trade balance measures the difference in value between imported and exported goods and services. In March, imports decreased by $5.4 billion (-1.62%) to $326.99B while exports decreased by $5.3 billion (2.02%) to $257.62B. Since imports decreased more than exports did, the trade deficit decreased.

Trade Deficit Exports and Imports

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