WASHINGTON — The November trade balance dropped to a $40.4 billion deficit, its lowest since November 2003 as imports fell $25 billion on the back of falling oil prices and collapsing world economies.

In imports, there was a $14.2 billion drop in oil and related products, a $1.2 billion decline in autos, and a $3.8 billion slip in consumer goods (pharmaceuticals, televisions, and other).

Exports fell $8.7 billion, mainly the result of drops in oil and computers.

The drop in trade is both an oil story as crude import prices plunged 27% to an average $66.72 and a result of weaker world economies cutting the dollar volumes of trade.

The real November trade balance collapsed back to mid-summer levels, and the October-November average stands about $2 billion wider than the second-quarter average. This suggesting trade will cut from real gross domestic product growth.

— Market News International


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