US trade deficit hits 5-yr high while trade gap with China w

Time: 2017-03-10 14:18
THE US trade deficit jumped in January to the higest level in nearly five years as a flood of mobile phones and other consumer products widened America's trade gap with China, according to media reports.
The deficit in trade of goods and services in the first month of the year widened 9.6 per cent from December to US$48.5 billion for the first expansion in two months. It was the largest monthly gap since a deficit of $50.2 billion in March 2012.
Exports rose 0.6 per cent to $192.1 billion due partly to growth in exports of automobiles and petroleum products.
Imports climbed 2.3 per cent to $240.59 billion, reflecting an increase in imports of cellphones and crude oil.
The trade deficit with China rose 12.8 per cent to $31.3 billion in January while the deficit with Japan shrank 16.2 per cent in January from the previous month to $5.47 billion, partly due to a drop in imports of automobiles and auto parts, the Commerce Department said.
The result underscores the challenges facing President Donald Trump in fulfilling a campaign pledge to reduce America's trade deficits.
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross pledged efforts to reduce the US trade deficit with countries such as China, Japan, Germany and Mexico.
"President Trump has made free and fair trade a central part of his agenda, and correcting this imbalance is an important step in achieving that goal," Mr Ross said in a statement.
The US goods trade deficit with Germany contracted 8.0 per cent to $4.88 billion, according to the department.
Contact:  Aster Chen
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