The US trade deficit rose sharply in 2021, as the economic recovery led Americans to more markets and consequently higher imports, with consumers paying more as inflation rose, leading to higher product prices.
In particular, the US trade deficit increased by 27% in the whole of the previous year and climbed to a record amount of 859 billion dollars.
For December, the trade deficit widened 1.8% to $ 80.7 billion, the second-highest monthly change in history.
Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal, however, forecast an even bigger trade deficit of $ 82.9 billion.
The significant expansion of the US trade deficit in the last month of last year, according to MarketWatch, most likely reflects the increased clearance of goods in US ports during December, in order to feed the market in time for the festive season.
However, rising inflation also contributed to the increase, especially in commodities imported, such as oil. Demand for imported fuel rose last year as the US economy moved faster and transportation increased.
The US trade deficit is expected to subside as soon as other countries’ economies fully recover and demand for US goods returns to pre-pandemic levels. However, the US is expected to continue to show a large trade deficit, as it has for years now.
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