Current year-to-date ( YTD ) data is through November 2019.

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Trade Snapshot

U.S. trade decreases 1.55 percent through November

U.S. trade with the world totaled $3.81 trillion through the first 11 months of 2019, according to a WorldCity analysis of the latest U.S. Census Bureau data.

That’s a 1.55 percent decrease since the same time period last year. The nation’s exports dropped 1.32 percent to $2 trillion and imports dropped 1.69 percent to $2.3 trillion. The overall trade deficit was $787 billion down compared to the same period last year, when the deficit was $806 billion.

Through November, the nation’s top trade partners were No. 1 Mexico, No. 2 Canada, No. 3 China, No. 4 Japan and No. 5 Germany. The same time period last year, the top five spots were held by No. 1 China, No. 2 Canada, No. 3 Mexico, No. 4 Japan and No. 5 Germany, respectively.

Taking a closer look at the leading U.S. trade partners:

  • No. 1 Mexico’s trade rose 0.51 percent to $568 billion. Exports fell 3.37 percent to $237 billion. Imports rose 3.48 percent to $331 billion.
  • No. 2 Canada’s trade fell 1.52 percent to $562 billion. Exports fell 2.27 percent to $270 billion. Imports fell 0.8 percent to $292 billion.
  • No. 3 China’s trade fell 14.61 percent to $516 billion. Exports fell 12.06 percent to $98 billion. Imports fell 15.18 percent to $419 billion.
  • No. 4 Japan’s trade rose 0.77 percent to $200 billion. Exports fell 0.5 percent to $68 billion. Imports rose 1.44 percent to $132 billion.
  • No. 5 Germany’s trade rose 1.98 percent to $172 billion. Exports rose 4.03 percent to $55 billion. Imports rose 1.04 percent to $117 billion.

The nation’s top five trading partners through November accounted for 46.95 percent of its trade with the world.

The U.S. had trade surpluses with 128 countries and deficits with 105 through November. That compares with 131 surpluses and 102 deficits for the same period one year earlier. The top three surpluses through November of this year were with Hong Kong, $24 billion; The Netherlands, $19 billion; United Arab Emirates, $14 billion. The top three deficits were with China, $321 billion; Mexico, $93 billion; and Japan, $64 billion.

The nation’s top five exports by value through November were civilian aircraft, parts; gasoline, other fuels; oil; motor vehicles for transporting people; and motor vehicle parts in that order. Those accounted for 22.74 percent of its total outbound trade.

The value of the nation’s top five imports through November were motor vehicles for transporting people; oil; cell phones, related equipment; computers; and returned exports, without change. They accounted for 23.1 percent of all inbound shipments.

Looking more closely at U.S. exports:

  • No. 1 Civilian aircraft, parts fell 4.02 percent compared to last year, to $113 billion.
  • No. 2 Gasoline, other fuels fell 8.62 percent compared to last year, to $79 billion.
  • No. 3 Oil rose 36.77 percent compared to last year, to $58 billion.
  • No. 4 Motor vehicles for transporting people rose 8.53 percent compared to last year, to $52 billion.
  • No. 5 Motor vehicle parts fell 4.91 percent compared to last year, to $40 billion.

On the import side:

  • No. 1 Motor vehicles for transporting people rose 1.78 percent compared to last year, to $161 billion.
  • No. 2 Oil fell 20.8 percent compared to last year, to $117 billion.
  • No. 3 Cell phones, related equipment fell 9.46 percent compared to last year, to $91 billion.
  • No. 4 Computers fell 3.06 percent compared to last year, to $82 billion.
  • No. 5 Returned exports, without change rose 13.24 percent compared to last year, to $78 billion.