U.S. trade deficit sinks 18% in October from record high as exports surge

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Number: The US trade deficit narrowed by nearly 18% in October after a huge jump in exports and barely any increase in imports. Traffic jams at domestic ports slowing down the arrival of foreign produced goods.

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The trade gap narrowed to $67.1 billion from the previous month’s record 81.4 billion, government said on Tuesday. Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal had estimated a deficit of $67 billion.

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US exports rose 8.1% to $223.6 billion

Imports rose less than 1% to $290.7 billion in October.

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big picture: The steep fall in the October trade gap from record highs a month ago is likely to be a one-off.

Export growth will not be sustained and imports have been curtailed by persistent delays at US ports to land waiting vessels. Those problems will eventually go away.

During the pandemic, the US is running at an unusually high deficit. Americans are buying up a lot of foreign-made goods amid a strong economic revival, but other countries have been slow to recover and that has dampened their appetite for American-made goods.

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Market Feedback: Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA,
+1.87%
and S&P 500 SPX,
+1.17%
Were set to open higher in Tuesday’s trading.

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