United States trade deficit hits 10-year high despite Trump's tariffs

Trump dealt blow as US trade deficit jumps

Trump has repeatedly said that our trade deficit is costing us jobs. However he apprised probers to anticipate the president to raise his stakes in a proposal to deflect consciousness from the declining trade situation.

Reuters reports the overnight comments delivered by the US President Donald Trump on the US-China trade talks during a meeting in the Oval Office.

Fresh data shows that the U.S. December trade deficit stood at 59.8 billion U.S. dollars, contributing to its whole-year trade deficit of 621 billion U.S. dollars. They also said American consumers continue to patronize imported smartphones, laptops and computer accessories, most of which are made in China. By the same logic, it's no surprise that America's trade deficit shrunk dramatically during the recession that followed the 2008 economic crisis. The shortfall reportedly came due to a 2.1-percent increase in imports to $264.9 billion, while exports saw a decline of 1.9 percent to $205.1 billion.

Trump persists with the import levies even as some supporters push for him to also act on other forces fuelling the trade deficit, including a robust dollar.

"The widening trade balance in December is a blow to U.S. trade policy, Bloomberg economists Tim Mahedy and Carl Riccadonna said".

That study also found that workers in Republican-leaning counties, especially in farm states, suffered the greatest losses from tariffs that U.S. trading partners imposed in retaliation for the president's actions.

Both nations are in discussions and there is speculation they could reach an agreement by the end of March.

President Donald Trump has made cutting the gap between the two countries a top priority of his administration.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported that, as a result of a fall in prices, due to China shifting its source of supplies, USA producers had held on to their product in the hope of a better price. Others worry Trump will go soft in demanding that China drop various means of forcing foreign firms to hand over technologies and trade secrets to do business in China.

"The US-China trade issue remains a core driver of market sentiment, with hopes of a breakthrough this month driving the bullish sentiment throughout US stocks in particular", said Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG.

Trump often misrepresents the trade deficit. The real, trade-weighted value of the US dollar increased 21.8 percent between December 2013 and December 2018, and including 6.7 percent in 2018 alone, as shown below.

Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council for the first 15 months of Trump's administration, had been president and chief operating officer of Goldman Sachs for more than a decade before he agreed to become Trump's top economic adviser. Adjusted for inflation, December was the highest imbalance of trade goods in USA history. Through the first 11 months of 2018, almost $7 billion of real income had been wiped out. Oddly Trump, ever the sucker for a dictator, hasn't done anything on that front, perhaps because his "friend" President Xi rolled out the red carpet and complimented Trump.

Part of the problem is Mr. Trump's own tax policies.

The jump in the so-called real goods trade deficit suggests that the drag from trade on fourth-quarter gross domestic product growth was probably bigger than the 0.22 percentage point estimated by the government last week.

This is achieved in part through adjustments to exchange rates in the foreign exchange markets.

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