U.S. trade deficit in August narrows for fifth straight month amid cooling demand

WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 (Xinhua) -- U.S. trade deficit fell by 4.3 percent in August, marking the fifth straight monthly drop and hitting the lowest level in more than a year, the Commerce Department reported on Wednesday.

In August, the goods and services deficit fell by 3.1 billion U.S. dollars from the previous month to reach 67.4 billion dollars, the report showed.

U.S. imports fell by 1.1 percent to 326.3 billion dollars in August, the lowest level since March. Exports, meanwhile, edged down by 0.3 percent to 258.9 billion dollars, after hitting a record level of 259.6 billion dollars.

Earlier data showed that the trade deficit shrank by roughly 19 percent in April after hitting an all-time high in March. The figure fell by a revised 0.9 percent, 5.8 percent and 12.9 percent in May, June and July, respectively.

"Despite the recent sharp narrowing, the U.S. is still running an outsized deficit compared to prior to what prevailed pre-pandemic," Tim Quinlan and Shannon Seery, economists at Wells Fargo Securities, said in an analysis.

"The sharp narrowing to date can be traced to slower import growth specifically, and the August data position net exports to be a considerable boost to third quarter growth," said Quinlan and Seery.

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