U.S. Trade Was Down in 2015 - Global Trade Magazine
  February 25th, 2016 | Written by

U.S. Trade Was Down in 2015

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  • U.S. exports of goods decreased $118.8 billion to $1.5 trillion in 2015.
  • U.S. exports of services increased $5.9 billion to $716.4 billion in 2015.
  • U.S. exports of industrial supplies, fuel oil, foods, feeds, and beverages, and soybeans all decreased in 2015.

The United States goods and services trade deficit for 2015 was $531.5 billion, up $23.2 billion or 4.6 percent from 2014. Exports were $2,230.3 billion, down $112.9 billion or 4.8 percent. Imports were $2,761.8 billion, down $89.7 billion or 3.1 percent, according to numbers released by the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Exports of goods decreased $118.8 billion to $1.5 trillion in 2015. Exports of services increased $5.9 billion to $716.4 billion in 2015.

In December 2015, the goods and services deficit was $43.4 billion, up $1.1 billion from $42.2 billion in November

The 2015 increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $17.5 billion or 2.4 percent to $758.9 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of $5.7 billion or 2.4 percent to $227.4 billion.

As a percentage of U.S. gross domestic product, the goods and services deficit was 3.0 percent in 2015, up from 2.9 percent in 2014.

Among specific economic sectors, exports of industrial supplies and materials decreased $76.9 billion; fuel oil decreased $22.2 billion; other petroleum products decreased $16.1 billion; foods, feeds, and beverages decreased $16.0 billion; and soybeans decreased $5.3 billion.

On the services side, other business services, which includes research and development services; professional management services; and technical, trade-related, and other services, increased $9.3 billion. Transport, which includes freight and port services and passenger fares, decreased $5.4 billion.

Imports of goods decreased $101.3 billion to $2.3 trillion in 2015.

Imports of industrial supplies and materials decreased $180.8 billion; crude oil decreased $120.5 billion; fuel oil decreased $17.3 billion; consumer goods increased $37.5 billion; and pharmaceuticals increased $16.4 billion.

Imports of services increased $11.6 billion to $489.0 billion in 2015. Travel increased $9.7 billion; other business services increased $5.2 billion; and transport increased $3.1 billion.

The 2015 figures show surpluses, in billions of dollars, with South and Central America ($37.4),

Hong Kong ($30.5), Australia ($14.2), Singapore ($10.4), OPEC ($6.6), and Brazil ($4.3). Deficits were recorded, in billions of dollars, with China ($365.7), European Union ($153.3), Germany ($74.2),

Japan ($68.6), Mexico ($58.4), South Korea ($28.3), Italy ($27.8), India ($23.2), Malaysia ($21.5),

France ($17.6), Thailand ($17.3), Canada ($14.9), and Taiwan ($14.8).

The deficit with China increased $22.6 billion to $365.7 billion in 2015. Exports decreased $7.5 billion to $116.2 billion and imports increased $15.1 billion to $481.9 billion.

The surplus with Brazil decreased $7.6 billion to $4.3 billion in 2015. Exports decreased $10.8 billion to $31.7 billion and imports decreased $3.1 billion to $27.4 billion.

December exports were $181.5 billion, $0.5 billion less than November exports. December imports were $224.9 billion, up $0.6 billion from November.

The December increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $1.3 billion to $62.5 billion and an increase in the services surplus of $0.1 billion to $19.2 billion.

The December figures show surpluses, in billions of dollars, with South and Central America ($2.8),

United Kingdom ($0.6), and Brazil ($0.2).  Deficits were recorded, in billions of dollars, with China ($29.7), European Union ($13.3), Germany ($6.4), Japan ($6.3), Mexico ($4.8), South Korea ($2.5), Italy ($2.2), India ($2.0), France ($1.4), Canada ($1.4), Saudi Arabia ($0.5), and OPEC ($0.2).

The balance with members of OPEC shifted from a surplus of $1.1 billion to a deficit of $0.2 billion in December. Exports decreased $1.2 billion to $5.2 billion and imports increased $0.1 billion to $5.4 billion.

The deficit with Germany increased $0.8 billion to $6.4 billion in December. Exports decreased less than $0.1 billion to $4.1 billion and imports increased $0.8 billion to $10.5 billion.


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