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U.S. trade balance 2000-2019

As of 2018, the United States had a trade deficit of about 616.8 billion U.S. dollars. The U.S. trade deficit has been steadily increasing since 2009 and is approaching 2006 levels, when the trade deficit was about 761.72 billion U.S. dollars.

What is the trade deficit?

A trade deficit is, quite simply, the total value of a country’s imports of goods and services minus the total value of its exports of goods and services. When a country exports more than it imports, it has a trade surplus, and when it imports more than it exports, it has a trade deficit. A trade deficit can mean one of two things: Either the country is failing to produce enough goods for its citizens, or its citizens are wealthy enough to purchase more goods than the country produces (as is the case with the United States).

Trading partners

The United States’ top export partners are its closest neighbors, Canada and Mexico, due in part to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which, pending ratification, will be replaced by the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). Regarding imports to the U.S., China takes the top spot, followed by Mexico and Canada.

United States' trade balance from 2000 to 2019

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Release date

February 2020


United States

Survey time period

2000 to 2019

Supplementary notes

Seasonally adjusted.
Numbers are rounded.
For detailed information on data sources and methodology, see the information section of "U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services" here.

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Statistics on "Trade in the U.S."

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