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US Monthly Trade Deficit Widens by 18.9%

The BEA reports the Goods and Services Trade Deficit widened by 18.9% to $63.6 billion. 


  • July exports were $168.1 billion, $12.6 billion more than June exports. 
  • July imports were $231.7 billion, $22.7 billion more than June imports.
  • Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit increased $6.4 billion, or 1.8 percent, from the same period in 2019. 
  • Year-to-date exports decreased $257.8 billion or 17.5 percent. Imports decreased $251.3 billion or 13.8 percent.

Normally trade deficits shrink in recession. Instead they are getting worse.

Greatest Theft in History

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Please consider US trade deficit with China wider than May 2016, when Donald Trump accused China of ‘greatest theft in history’

The deficit with China – the gap between the amount the US buys from China and what it sells – was US$31.62 billion in July, just 3.46 per cent lower than US$32.8 billion in July 2019, data released by the US Census Bureau on Thursday showed.

In quarterly terms, the deficit climbed 36.8 per cent from the first three months of the year to the second, even if it is markedly lower in year-to-date terms than it was last year, due to a shutdown of China’s export engine in the early months of the year, when it was the first to be hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

But perhaps most tellingly, the US trade deficit with China was 4.36 per cent wider last month than it was in July 2016, when Trump was on the campaign trail raging against it. Last month’s deficit was 9.15 per cent wider than May 2016, a month when Trump accused China of “raping” the US on trade.

Do not forget. We’re like the piggy bank that is being robbed. We have the cards. We have a lot of power with China,” Trump said at the time, during a campaign rally in Fort Wayne, Indiana. “Because we cannot continue to allow China to rape our country. And that is what they’re doing. It’s the greatest theft in the history of the world.”

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