WASHINGTON — The U.S. goods and services deficit in January increased to $58.2 billion as both imports and exports increased, with the picture largely determined by record oil imports, the Commerce Department reported yesterday.

Imports rose $2.7 billion in January to $206.4 billion, while exports increased $2.4 billion to $148.2 billion.

The imports gain was led by a $2.8 billion increase in crude oil imports, which reached a $39.5 billion for the month as the price per barrel of oil hit $84.09 compared with $82.76 in December. It was also the first time since October 1992 that the petroleum trade deficit, which totaled a record $35.1 billion, outstripped the non-petroleum trade deficit. Also increasing in the January import tally were fuel oil by $1.2 billion, as well as foods by $324 million and autos by $187 million.

On the export side of the ledger, industrial supplies rose $804 million, while foods gained $601 million, consumer goods $489 million, and pharmaceuticals $199 million.

The trade balances with OPEC, China, and Canada widened to $15.5 billion, $20.3 billion and $5.9 billion, respectively. Meanwhile the trade balance with the European Union slipped to $6.053 billion, the lowest level since March 2002.

— Market News International

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