The trade deficit in goods with China ballooned by 13.8 percent year-over-year while the overall trade deficit increased by 5 percent since March as imports increased slightly and exports declined following the release of the April 2017 International Trade in Goods and Services monthly data by the Department of Commerce.
“While the overall trade deficit continues to grow, it is too soon for the numbers to reflect the recent deal with China and other actions of this Administration is taking to level the balance of trade,” said Secretary Ross. “We look forward to the July 16 deadline which will open up the Chinese market to American beef, liquefied natural gas and other products.”
The U.S. goods and services deficit with China increased 5.4 percent from the fourth quarter of 2016 to the first quarter of 2017 growing from $77.714 billion to $81.901 billion.
The trade deficit widened month-to-month with China from 24.6 billion in March to 27.6 billion in April.
While the trade deficit with China grew, there was improvement in other areas. April exports to South Korea were the highest ever on record, while exports to Japan were the largest since August of 2014.
Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit increased $9.4 billion, or 7.5 percent, from the same period in 2016. Exports increased $38.0 billion or 7.1 percent. Imports increased $47.5 billion or 7.1 percent.
The April increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $2.3 billion to $68.4 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of less than $0.1 billion to $20.8 billion.