The Straits Times
Published on Oct 11, 2012

US trade deficit widens as exports fall


WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - The United States' trade deficit widened in August, in line with analyst expectations, as US goods exports fell for the fifth consecutive month, a government report showed on Thursday.

The monthly trade gap increased to US$44.2 billion (S$54.9 billion), from an upwardly revised estimate of US$42.5 billion in July, the Commerce Department said. Analysts were expecting an August trade gap of about US$44 billion.

Overall US exports dropped 1.0 per cent, as troubles in Europe continued to weigh on global growth, while imports fell 0.1 per cent in a sign of faltering US demand for consumer products, autos and capital goods.

Exports of oil, chemicals and other industrial supplies fell to the lowest level since February last year, helping pull down the entire goods category, despite an increase in capital goods exports to the second-highest level on record.