U.S. Goods Trade Deficit Worsens Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The US Census Bureau and the US Bureau of Economic Analysis today announced that the goods and services deficit was $44.4 billion in March, up $4.6 billion from $39.8 billion in February.

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March exports were $187.7 billion, $20.0 billion less than February exports. March imports were $232.2 billion, $15.4 billion less than February imports.

The March increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $4.6 billion to $65.6 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of $0.1 billion to $21.2 billion.

Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit decreased $28.1 billion (17.8 percent) from the same period in 2019. Exports decreased by $21.7 billion (3.5 percent). Imports decreased by $49.7 billion (6.4 percent).

According to the US Bureau of Economic Analysis:

The declines in March exports and imports were, in part, due to the impact of COVID-19, as many businesses were operating at limited capacity or ceased operations completely, and the movement of travelers across borders was restricted.

The full economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic cannot be quantified in the trade statistics for March because the impacts are generally embedded in source data and cannot be separately identified. The Census Bureau and the Bureau of Economic Analysis have monitored data quality and determined estimates in this release meet publication standards.

For more information on the compilation of this month’s report, visit the US Census website or goods or the US Bureau of Economic Analysis website for services.

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