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  July 7th, 2014 | Written by

Trade Deficit Drops, Exports Up, Imports Down in May

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Washington, DC – The US exported $195.5 billion of goods and services in May 2014, cutting the trade deficit by 5.6 percent to $44.4 billion after hitting a two-year high of $47 billion in April, according to the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).

Exports of goods and services over the last twelve months totaled $2.3 trillion, which is 45.7 percent above the level of exports in 2009, and have been growing at an annualized rate of 8.9 percent when compared to 2009.

The rise in exports reflected record sales of US-made autos and auto parts, which rose to a record high, the BEA said, while exports of consumer goods were also the highest on record.

Total US exports to Canada were the highest on record while imports from Canada were the highest since July 2008, leaving a trade deficit of $2.8 billion with Canada. America had a record $2.7 billion trade deficit with South Korea in May as imports from that country hit a record high.

During the same time period among the major export markets (i.e., markets with at least $6 billion in annual imports of US goods), the countries with the largest annualized increase in US goods purchases, when compared to 2009, were Panama, 22.5 percent; Russia,19.6 percent; Peru, 17.9 percent; Colombia, 17.4 percent; Ecuador, 17.3 percent; Hong Kong, 17.3 percent; Argentina, 16.3 percent; Nigeria, 15.1 percent; Chile, 14.8 percent; and Indonesia, 14.6 percent.

Imports fell a slight 0.3 percent to $239.8 billion during the month due in large part to an 11.3 percent jump in exports of US petroleum products.

The rise in US production has helped lower the need for imported oil, which dropped by 5 percent in May to $28.3 billion, the lowest monthly import total since November 2010.