U.S. Trade Deficit Narrows to $50.1 Billion in April

U.S. Trade Deficit Narrows to $50.1 Billion in April
By The Associated Press
Posted 10:03AM 06/08/12

Posted under: Economy


WASHINGTON -- The U.S. trade deficit shrunk in April, but only because
a big drop in imports offset the first decline in U.S. exports in five

The Commerce Department says the trade deficit narrowed 4.9% in April
to $50.1 billion.

U.S. exports, which had hit a record the previous month, fell 0.8% to
$182.9 billion. Sales of everything from commercial jetliners to
industrial machinery declined.

Imports, which also set a record in March, dropped an even faster 1.7%
to $233 billion.

The trade gap remains wide and could therefore weigh on growth in the
April-June quarter. A wider trade gap slows growth because it means
the United States is spending more on foreign-made products than it is
taking in from sales of U.S.-made goods.

And the slip in exports is troublesome because it shows the weaker
global economy is dampening demand for American-made goods. Export
sales declined to Europe, China and Brazil.

Europe's debt crisis has worsened in recent months and many economists
say the region is already in recession. Europe accounts for almost one-
fifth of U.S. exports.