US Goods Trade Deficit Surges Near Record High (Don't Tell Trump)

Do not show this to President Trump, he will not be happy...

In the few months since President Trump unleashed his trade war, predicated on managing back America's massive merchandise trade deficit, things have gone very wrong, judging by the numbers.

Against expectations of a $70.6 billion deficit, August's goods trade balance plunged to $75.8 billion - just shy of July 2008's record high deficit of $76.025 billion...

Notably, the trade deficit was worse than the forecast range $68b to $73.9b from 36 economists.

Whether this reflects pre-emptive actions ahead of actual tariffs is unclear:

  • Exports fell 1.6% in Aug. to $137.912b from $140.199b in the prior month

  • Imports rose 0.7% to $213.742b in Aug. from $212.246b in July

With exports of food and beverage and Industrial supplies plunging in August (and consumer goods surging).

Imports were dominated by a 3.2% increase in Automotives.