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U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, March 2021

Summary:
The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis announced today that the goods and services deficit was .4 billion in March, up .9 billion from .5 billion in February, revised. U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services Deficit Deficit: .4 Billion +5.6%° Exports: 0.0 Billion +6.6%° Imports: 4.5 Billion +6.3%° Next release: Tuesday, June 8, 2021 (°) Statistical significance is not applicable or not measurable. Data adjusted for seasonality but not price changes Source: U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis; U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, May 4, 2021 COVID-19 Impact on International Trade in Goods and Services The

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The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis announced today that the goods and services deficit was $74.4 billion in March, up $3.9 billion from $70.5 billion in February, revised.

U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services Deficit
Deficit:

$74.4 Billion

+5.6%°

Exports:

$200.0 Billion

+6.6%°

Imports:

$274.5 Billion

+6.3%°

Next release: Tuesday, June 8, 2021

(°) Statistical significance is not applicable or not measurable. Data adjusted for seasonality but not price changes

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis; U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, May 4, 2021

U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, March 2021

COVID-19 Impact on International Trade in Goods and Services

The global pandemic and the economic recovery continued to impact international trade in March 2021. The full economic effects of the pandemic cannot be quantified in the statistics because the impacts are generally embedded in source data and cannot be separately identified.

Exports, Imports, and Balance (exhibit 1)

March exports were $200.0 billion, $12.4 billion more than February exports. March imports were $274.5 billion, $16.4 billion more than February imports.

The March increase in the goods and services deficit reflected an increase in the goods deficit of $3.6 billion to $91.6 billion and a decrease in the services surplus of $0.3 billion to $17.1 billion.

Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit increased $83.2 billion, or 64.2 percent, from the same period in 2020. Exports decreased $21.0 billion or 3.5 percent. Imports increased $62.2 billion or 8.5 percent.

Three-Month Moving Averages (exhibit 2)

The average goods and services deficit increased $2.5 billion to $70.9 billion for the three months ending in March.

  • Average exports increased $3.3 billion to $193.3 billion in March.
  • Average imports increased $5.8 billion to $264.2 billion in March.

Year-over-year, the average goods and services deficit increased $27.7 billion from the three months ending in March 2020.

  • Average exports decreased $7.0 billion from March 2020.
  • Average imports increased $20.7 billion from March 2020.

Exports (exhibits 3, 6, and 7)

Exports of goods increased $11.7 billion to $142.9 billion in March.

  Exports of goods on a Census basis increased $11.7 billion.

  • Industrial supplies and materials increased $5.2 billion.
    • Nonmonetary gold increased $3.4 billion.
    • Natural gas decreased $1.7 billion.
  • Capital goods increased $2.9 billion.
    • Semiconductors increased $0.4 billion.
    • Electric apparatus increased $0.4 billion.
  • Consumer goods increased $2.0 billion.
    • Artwork and other collectibles increased $0.4 billion.
    • Gem diamonds increased $0.4 billion.

  Net balance of payments adjustments decreased less than $0.1 billion.

Exports of services increased $0.8 billion to $57.1 billion in March.

  • Travel increased $0.4 billion.
  • Transport increased $0.3 billion.
  • Financial services increased $0.1 billion.

Imports (exhibits 4, 6, and 8)

Imports of goods increased $15.3 billion to $234.4 billion in March.

  Imports of goods on a Census basis increased $15.3 billion.

  • Consumer goods increased $4.5 billion.
    • Other textile apparel and household goods increased $1.2 billion.
    • Furniture and household goods increased $0.9 billion.
    • Toys, games, and sporting goods increased $0.9 billion.
    • Cell phones and other household goods decreased $1.0 billion.
  • Industrial supplies and materials increased $3.7 billion.
    • Other petroleum products increased $0.8 billion.
    • Crude oil increased $0.6 billion.
    • Fuel oil increased $0.6 billion.
    • Finished metal shapes decreased $1.3 billion.
  • Capital goods increased $3.3 billion.
    • Semiconductors increased $1.3 billion.
    • Other industrial machinery increased $0.5 billion.
    • Telecommunications equipment increased $0.5 billion.
    • Civilian aircraft decreased $1.4 billion.
  • Automotive vehicles, parts, and engines increased $2.0 billion.
    • Passenger cars increased $1.0 billion.
    • Automotive parts and accessories increased $0.7 billion.

  Net balance of payments adjustments increased less than $0.1 billion.

Imports of services increased $1.1 billion to $40.0 billion in March.

  • Transport increased $0.9 billion.
  • Travel increased $0.1 billion.

Real Goods in 2012 Dollars – Census Basis (exhibit 11)

The real goods deficit increased $4.2 billion to $103.1 billion in March.

  • Real exports of goods increased $9.3 billion to $148.7 billion.
  • Real imports of goods increased $13.4 billion to $251.8 billion.

Revisions

Revisions to February exports

  • Exports of goods were revised up $0.1 billion.
  • Exports of services were revised up $0.2 billion.

Revisions to February imports

  • Imports of goods were revised up less than $0.1 billion.
  • Imports of services were revised down $0.2 billion.

Goods by Selected Countries and Areas: Monthly – Census Basis (exhibit 19)

The March figures show surpluses, in billions of dollars, with South and Central America ($3.6), Hong Kong ($2.9), Brazil ($1.0), Singapore ($0.6), and United Kingdom ($0.1). Deficits were recorded, in billions of dollars, with China ($36.9), European Union ($16.9), Mexico ($8.4), Germany ($5.5), Japan ($5.1), Canada ($3.1), Italy ($2.9), Taiwan ($2.6), India ($2.2), South Korea ($2.1), France ($1.5), and Saudi Arabia (less than $0.1).

  • The deficit with China increased $6.7 billion to $36.9 billion in March. Exports increased $0.9 billion to $11.3 billion and imports increased $7.6 billion to $48.2 billion.
  • The deficit with Mexico increased $1.6 billion to $8.4 billion in March. Exports decreased $0.6 billion to $22.2 billion and imports increased $1.0 billion to $30.6 billion.
  • The deficit with the European Union decreased $2.1 billion to $16.9 billion in March. Exports decreased $0.5 billion to $20.1 billion and imports decreased $2.6 billion to $37.0 billion.

*             *             *

All statistics referenced are seasonally adjusted; statistics are on a balance of payments basis unless otherwise specified. Additional statistics, including not seasonally adjusted statistics and details for goods on a Census basis, are available in exhibits 1-20b of this release. For information on data sources, definitions, and revision procedures, see the explanatory notes in this release. The full release can be found at www.census.gov/foreign-trade/Press-Release/current_press_release/index.html or www.bea.gov/data/intl-trade-investment/international-trade-goods-and-services. The full schedule is available in the Census Bureau’s Economic Briefing Room at www.census.gov/economic-indicators/ or on BEA’s website at www.bea.gov/news/schedule.

*             *             *

Next release: June 8, 2021, at 8:30 A.M. EDT
U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, April 2021

*             *             *

Notice

Upcoming Updates to Goods and Services

With the releases of the “U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services, April 2021” report (FT-900) and the FT-900 Annual Revision on June 8, 2021, statistics on trade in goods on both a Census basis and a balance of payments (BOP) basis will be revised beginning with 2016, and statistics on trade in services will be revised beginning with 2013. The revised statistics for goods on a BOP basis and for services will also be included in the “U.S. International Transactions, First Quarter 2021 and Annual Update” report and in the international transactions interactive database, both to be released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) on June 23, 2021.

Revised statistics on trade in goods will reflect:

  • Corrections and adjustments to previously published not seasonally adjusted statistics for goods on a Census basis.
  • Incorporation of a new BOP adjustment to improve the coverage of aircraft imports on a BOP basis. For more information on BOP adjustments, which are adjustments that BEA applies to goods on a Census basis to convert them to a BOP basis, see the “Goods (balance of payments basis)” section in the explanatory notes.
  • Newly available and revised source data on other BOP adjustments.
  • Recalculated seasonal and trading-day adjustments.

Revised statistics on trade in services will reflect:

  • Newly available and revised source data, primarily from BEA surveys of international services, including the results of BEA’s benchmark survey of insurance services.
  • Recalculated seasonal adjustments.
  • Revised temporal distributions of quarterly source data to monthly statistics. See the “Services” section in the explanatory notes for more information.

A preview of BEA’s 2021 annual update of the international transactions accounts appears in the April 2021 issue of the Survey of Current Business.

If you have questions, please contact the U.S. Census Bureau, Economic Indicators Division, on (800) 549-0595, option 4, or at [email protected] or BEA, Balance of Payments Division, at [email protected].

Bureau of Economic Analysis
The BEA Advisory Committee advises the Director of BEA on matters related to the development and improvement of BEA’s national, regional, industry, and international economic accounts, especially in areas of new and rapidly growing economic activities arising from innovative and advancing technologies, and provides recommendations from the perspectives of the economics profession, business, and government.

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