Background

The U.S. trade deficit in goods and services fell again in February, down 12.1 percent to its lowest level in more than three years, according to trade statistics released April 2 by the Department of Commerce. The monthly deficit of $39.9 billion reflected a 0.4 percent decrease in exports to $207.5 billion and a 2.5 percent decline in imports to $247.5 billion, both likely due in large part to measures taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. DOC states that the deficit was down 18.7 percent from February 2019 as exports rose 0.3 percent but imports fell 3.6 percent.

The deficit in goods trade declined 8.8 percent in February to $61.2 billion. Imports of goods were down 2.5 percent to $198.4 billion, including decreases of $1.4 billion in computers, $600 million each in telecommunications equipment and fuel oil, and $500 million in computer accessories. Exports of goods were up 0.7 percent to $137.2 billion, including increases of $500 million in fuel oil and $300 million in automotive parts and accessories along with decreases of $300 million in pharmaceutical preparations and $200 million in gem diamonds.

The services surplus lost 1.8 percent to $21.3 billion, with imports down 2.8 percent to $49.1 billion and exports down 2.4 percent to $70.3 billion.

Country/region

Deficit

% Change

Surplus

% Change

China

$19.7 billion

-16.9

   

European Union

$12.6 billion

-6.7

   

Mexico

$9.7 billion

+5.4

   

Japan

$5.1 billion

-3.8

   

Germany

$4.8 billion

-14.3

   

Italy

$2.3 billion

-11.5

   

India

$1.6 billion

-5.9

   

Canada

$1.6 billion

+128.6

   

Taiwan

$1.5 billion

-16.7

   

South Korea

$1.1 billion

+183.3

   

France

$0.5 billion

-28.6

   

South/Central America

   

$5.9 billion

+1.7

Brazil

   

$1.9 billion

+11.8

Hong Kong

   

$1.5 billion

-16.7

United Kingdom

   

$1.3 billion

-18.8

Singapore

   

$0.7 billion

Change from $0.1 billion deficit

Saudi Arabia

   

$0.3 billion

Change from <$0.1 billion deficit

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