US trade deficit widens in January
The US trade deficit swelled in January to a seven month high of $46.3 billion (£28.8 billion) – much higher than expected.
The widening was attributed to higher prices for imported oil, the Commerce Department reported today.
Imports continued to surge – rising for the fourth consecutive month in January by 5.2% on a monthly basis.
Meanwhile, exports rose by 2.7% to a record high of $167.7 billion.
The politically sensitive trade deficit with China grew to $23.3 billion after narrowing to $20.7 billion in December.
Following the news, US stock markets were down since analysts had forecast a deficit of $41.5 billion.