Friday, October 9, 2009

Trade Balance Breakdown

Bloomberg details:
The U.S. trade deficit unexpectedly narrowed in August as exports climbed to the highest level of the year and oil imports plunged.

The gap fell 3.6 percent to $30.7 billion from a revised $31.9 billion in July, the Commerce Department said today in Washington. A rebound in auto making contributed to a jump in exports to Canada, while a drop in the number of barrels of petroleum bought abroad swamped an increase in fuel prices.
The chart below shows that "jump" in exports (i.e. no jump) during August.

More broadly, the following chart shows the improved trade budget deficit over the longer term. It looks like a case of the old "addition by the elimination of subtraction" (a greater subtraction of imports rather than improvement in exports).

Source: Census

1 comment:

  1. For your next trick let's explore the S-I=NX relationship. Seriously - when we spent more than we made we had to import the difference and finance it with borrowings. That meant Net Exports << 0. As we shift to more of a savers world, reduce aggregate debt and consume less than we make all the associated flows will reverse. Then NX>0 <=> S>I, less borrowed from abroad so $ goes up, more internal savings less pressures on R, interest rates.....
    Here's the real rub....nobody gets this well enough to factor it into their investment planning.