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Analysts predicted that the trade deficit would narrow to $51.8 billion in February from $52.6 billion in January.Statistics released last month indicated that the trade deficit had significantly expanded in January to its widest since 2008.
Last month’s trade balance was revised narrower only slightly, to $52.5 billion.
While many see a widening trade deficit as a negative sign, historically an expanding trade deficit has been found to correlate directly with a rising GDP.
The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced today that total February exports of $181.2 billion and imports of $227.2 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $46.0 billion, down from $52.5 billion in January, revised. February exports were $0.2 billion more than January exports of $180.9 billion. February imports were $6.3 billion less than January imports of $233.4 billion.
In February, the goods deficit decreased $6.0 billion from January to $61.4 billion, and the services surplus increased $0.5 billion from January to $15.4 billion. Exports of goods decreased $0.6 billion to $128.0 billion, and imports of goods decreased $6.5 billion to $189.4 billion. Exports of services increased $0.8 billion to $53.2 billion, and imports of services increased $0.2 billion to $37.8 billion.
The goods and services deficit increased $0.6 billion from February 2011 to February 2012. Exports were up $15.4 billion, or 9.3 per cent, and imports were up $16.1 billion, or 7.6 per cent.