Background

The U.S. trade deficit in goods and services soared 27.0 percent in 2021 as both imports and exports saw significant increases amid a resurgence in the domestic and global economies. A Reuters article said the U.S. saw record imports from 70 countries along with record exports to 57 countries.

Annual statistics. For all of 2021 the U.S. trade deficit totaled $859.1 billion, up from $678.7 billion in 2020. Exports jumped 18.5 percent to $2.53 trillion and imports gained 20.5 percent to $3.39 trillion. Both were higher for the first time in three years.

The goods deficit was up 18.3 percent to a record-high $1.09 trillion. Exports rose 23.3 percent to an all-time high of $1.76 trillion, including increases of $25.9 billion in foods, feeds, and beverages, $25.2 billion in other petroleum products, and $24.1 billion in pharmaceutical preparations. Imports gained 21.3 percent to a record $2.85 trillion, including increases of $56.3 billion in crude oil, $27.8 billion in foods, feeds, and beverages, and $20.8 billion in auto parts and accessories.

The services surplus fell 5.6 percent to $231.5 billion. Exports gained 8.6 percent to $766.6 billion while imports rose 16.2 percent to $535.0 billion.

The goods and services deficit was 3.7 percent of gross domestic product in 2021, up from 3.2 percent in 2020.

Country/region

Deficit

% Change

Surplus

% Change

China

$355.3 billion

+14.3

 

 

European Union

$219.6 billion

+19.7

 

 

Mexico

$108.2 billion

-4.0

 

 

Germany

$70.1 billion

+22.3

 

 

Ireland

$60.2 billion

+7.7

 

 

Japan

$60.2 billion

+8.7

 

 

Canada

$49.0 billion

+230.0

 

 

Malaysia

$41.0 billion

+29.3

 

 

Taiwan

$40.2 billion

+34.4

 

 

Italy

$39.3 billion

+33.2

 

 

Switzerland

$39.0 billion

-31.2

 

 

Thailand

$34.7 billion

+31.4

 

 

India

$33.1 billion

+39.1

 

 

South Korea

$29.2 billion

+17.7

 

 

France

$20.3 billion

+30.1

 

 

Indonesia

$17.6 billion

+37.5

 

 

South/Central America

 

 

$53.6 billion

+34.7

Hong Kong

 

 

$25.8 billion

+60.2

Netherlands

 

 

$18.2 billion

+0.6

Brazil

 

 

$15.6 billion

+33.3

Australia

 

 

$14.0 billion

+53.8

Belgium

 

 

$12.7 billion

+89.6

Monthly statistics. The monthly trade deficit in goods and services was $80.7 billion in December 2021, up 1.8 percent from November and just shy of a record.

Imports rose 1.6 percent from November to December to $308.9 billion. Imports of goods were up 2.0 percent to a record-high $259.7 billion, including increases of $2.4 billion in cell phones and other household goods, $1.4 billion in passenger cars, and $1.0 billion in toys, games, and sporting goods. Imports of services fell 0.8 percent to $49.2 billion.

Exports were up 1.5 percent to $228.1 billion. Exports of goods rose 1.3 percent to $158.3 billion, including increases of $1.2 billion in non-monetary gold, $1.0 billion in pharmaceutical preparations, and $800 million in passenger cars. Services exports gained 2.0 percent to $69.9 billion.

For the month, the deficit in goods trade was up 3.3 percent to $101.4 billion while the services trade surplus gained 9.5 percent to $20.7 billion.

Country/region

Deficit

% Change

Surplus

% Change

China

$34.1 billion

+20.1

 

 

European Union

$16.3 billion

-16.0

 

 

Mexico

$11.0 billion

0

 

 

Germany

$5.3 billion

-13.1

 

 

Japan

$5.0 billion

+38.9

 

 

Canada

$4.2 billion

-22.2

 

 

India

$3.9 billion

_+30.0

 

 

Taiwan

$3.8 billion

-5.0

 

 

South Korea

$3.7 billion

+68.2

 

 

Italy

$3.1 billion

-13.9

 

 

France

$0.8 billion

-33.3

 

 

Saudi Arabia

$0.7 billion

+75.0

 

 

South/Central America

 

 

$5.4 billion

+20.0

Hong Kong

 

 

$1.9 billion

+18.8

Brazil

 

 

$1.2 billion

+20.0

Singapore

 

 

$0.8 billion

+166.7

United Kingdom

 

 

$0.6 billion

+20.0

 

Copyright © 2022 Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg, P.A.; WorldTrade Interactive, Inc. All rights reserved.

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