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September Trade Deficit Widens as Imports Outpace Exports

Bruno T
Latest News
November 07 2023 4:10AM

The US international trade deficit widened to $61.54 billion in September from a $58.66 billion gap in August, a wider deficit than the $59.8 billion gap expected in a survey compiled by Bloomberg as of 7:40 am ET.

Both exports and imports increased, with the imports increasing faster.

Imports of industrial supplies, capital goods, auto supplies and consumer goods all rose in September, with particularly large gains for crude oil, autos and cell phones.

Every category of exports increased in the month, particularly for industrial supplies and foods and feeds.

Exports

Exports from the United States increased by $5.7 billion over a month to $261.1 billion in September 2023, the highest level since August 2022, driven by a $5.3 billion increase in goods sales.

Shipments of industrial supplies and materials rose by $1.4 billion, primarily in crude oil and other petroleum products.

Furthermore, exports of foods, feeds, and beverages surged by $1.4 billion, mainly due to increased shipments of soybeans and corn.

There was also an $0.8 billion increase in other goods exports. Exports of services saw a $0.3 billion increase, totaling $84.4 billion, primarily driven by growth in travel and transport.

Imports

Imports into the United States increased by $8.6 billion from a month earlier to $322.7 billion in September 2023, the highest level since February, primarily driven by a $7.0 billion rise in goods purchases.

Consumer goods imports increased by $2.0 billion, primarily due to cell phones and other household goods, which saw a $1.8 billion rise.

Additionally, acquisitions of passenger cars increased by $1.7 billion, and purchases of capital goods advanced by $1.6 billion, attributed to computer accessories, civilian aircraft parts, other industrial machinery, and materials handling equipment.

Crude oil imports also rose by $1.4 billion. Meanwhile, imports of services increased by $1.5 billion, reaching $59.6 billion in September, primarily driven by growth in the transport and travel sectors.