Khunaspix/Dreamstime
Port Trade Supply Chain Image Feat Truck Plane Airplane Cargo Ship Container © Khunaspix Dreamstime
Port Trade Supply Chain Image Feat Truck Plane Airplane Cargo Ship Container © Khunaspix Dreamstime
Port Trade Supply Chain Image Feat Truck Plane Airplane Cargo Ship Container © Khunaspix Dreamstime
Port Trade Supply Chain Image Feat Truck Plane Airplane Cargo Ship Container © Khunaspix Dreamstime
Port Trade Supply Chain Image Feat Truck Plane Airplane Cargo Ship Container © Khunaspix Dreamstime

November Trade Gap Driven by Increased Imports

Jan. 6, 2022
Industrial supplies and materials drove about half of the increase in new goods imports.

The U.S. goods and services gap rose by $13 billion to $80.2 billion from October to November, the Census Bureau reported Thursday, mainly thanks to more goods imports ahead of the holiday season. The latest figures, along with a record deficit increase in September, raised the three-month moving average trade gap to $76.3 billion, $11.7 billion higher than it was in the three-month period that ended November 2020.

The goods deficit—which excludes services—now runs $99.0 billion after goods imports increased by $12.0 billion and exports of material goods fell $2.9 billion. In total, the U.S. exported $155.9 billion and imported $254.9 billion.

Amid an ongoing supply chain crisis for manufacturers, industrial supplies and materials drove about half of the increase in new goods imports. Of $12.0 billion in new goods imports in November, $5.9 billion of it was spent on supplies for businesses. Finished metal shapes and crude oil imports rose by $1.5 billion and $1.3 billion, respectively. Consumer goods contributed $3.0 billion to new goods imports while imports of trucks and cars from other countries rose $1.2 billion.

Though net U.S. exports increased in November, exports of goods actually fell by $2.9 billion. Of that, capital goods exports—including telecommunications equipment, civilian aircraft engines, and other industrial machines—fell by $1.2 billion. Industrial supplies and materials exports fell a total of $0.9 billion as nonmonetary gold exports fell $1.4 billion but were offset by a small increase in crude oil.

At the same time, the U.S. increased its services surplus by $2.1 billion to $18.8 billion. Exports outpaced imports growth in travel and transport as exports rose to $68.3 billion and imports rose to $49.5 billion.

Internationally, the U.S. recorded higher deficits with Europe and Canada on substantial import increases. $2.2 billion more in imports from European Union drove the U.S.-E.U. trade gap to $19.4 billion, while $2.8 billion more in Canadian imports drove the United States’ deficit with its northern neighbor to $5.4 billion.

Meanwhile, the U.S.-China trade gap, its largest, remained stable at $28.4 billion, and the U.S.-South Korea trade gap fell slightly.

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