U.S. Trade Deficit Continues to Shrink

The U.S. trade deficit is continuing to shrink.  The balance on trade of goods and services and income receipts and payments has decreased from the third quarter of 2006 at $193.5 billion to $152.7 billion in the third quarter of 2007. This over 40 billion dollar narrowing of the trade deficit has been accomplished primarily by an increase in exports which has outpaced the increase in imports. The table below shows the relative growth of the accounts and the narrowing of the deficit.  These figures do not include unilateral transfers of money, such as foreign workers sending money to relatives and family in foreign countries, estimated at $25.8 billion in the third quarter of 2007.

Currently, imports are 24.5% greater than exports. In the 3rd quarter of 2006, imports were 36.3% greater than exports. At the current rates of growth, the United States would eliminate its trade deficit in four years. 

The source of this information is the Bureau of Economic Analysis.