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US trade deficit climbs to 14-year high (third highest level on record)


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Throughout his time at the White House, Mr. Trump has vowed to sharply cut the US trade deficit, engaging in a series of economic conflicts with America’s allies and its strategic competitors — including introducing billions of dollars of tariffs and making blustery threats of more to come — that clouded the global outlook even before the pandemic hit.

 

But Tuesday’s data showed that in macroeconomic terms Mr. Trump’s trade strategy did not yield the results he was looking for. In terms of goods alone, the US in August recorded a trade gap of $26.4bn with China, $15.7bn with the EU and $12.5bn with Mexico — the three main trading partners with which Mr. Trump has repeatedly clashed on the issue throughout his presidency. For the year to the end of August, the trade deficit was 5.7 per cent higher than it was in 2019.

Financial Times Article

 

I thought Trump would be such a great dealmaker?! Looks more like he's the laughing stock of the world. So much for "America First"...

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The trade gap in the US widened to USD 67.1 billion in August of 2020 from a downwardly revised USD 63.4 billion in July and higher than market forecasts of USD 66.1 billion. It is the biggest trade deficit since a record high in August of 2006 as imports returned to pre-pandemic levels while exports rose at a slower pace. The goods gap reached a record high of USD 83.9 billion while the services surplus shrank to USD 16.8 billion, the lowest since 2012. Imports increased 3.2% to USD 239 billion, the highest level since February, mainly led by purchases of pharmaceutical preparations; passenger cars; and crude oil while declines were seen for nonmonetary gold and finished metal shapes. Exports increased 2.2% to USD 171.9 billion, with sales rising mostly for nonmonetary gold and soybeans while shipments of semiconductors went down. The trade deficit with China fell 6.7% to USD 26.4 billion.

 

https://tradingeconomics.com/united-states/balance-of-trade

 

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This story really needs more attention.....because it's another glaring and indefensible illustration of Trump's lies, arrogance, and sheer incompetence.

 

From day one,  the "MAGA / Buy American" rhetoric was the fundamental foundation of Trump's platform and his entire campaign.   He told us he was tired of watching other countries rip off America.....he would bring jobs back and level the playing field by forcing new, more favorable trade agreements with our foreign partners.    He was gonna make deals!

 

Trump's supporters obviously celebrated these deals and held them up as shining examples of the great work he was doing....and while I'm hardly a Trump supporter, I gladly gave Trump credit for making the moves he promised he would make.   After all, he was getting stuff done.

 

Or so we were told.

 

But after all of Trump's posturing, flag-waving, and self-congratulatory bravado about the great deals he was cutting....when the rubber hits the road, it turns out that his deals are nothing more than smoke-and-mirrors bullshit.    The fact is,  the trade deficit has grown steadily worse every single year of his presidency.    After Obama left office, the trade deficit increased by almost 20% over Trump's first three years.....and this year, it's absolutely dropped off a cliff and is now one of the worst deficits in US history.     We're still buying from China and other nations the same as always.....but they ain't buying from us.

 

2016:  $ -40B

2017:   $ - 42B

2018:  $ -45B

2019:  $ -47B

Today:    $ - 67 Billion

 

Again.....we're talking about one of the pillars of Trump's entire campaign and the fundamental foundation of his entire presidency.     This was the #1 thing he promised Americans he would do......and now it turns out he couldn't even get THAT right.

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