US trade deficit jumps 4.8% to $71.1 billion in February

The U.S. trade deficit grew to a record $71.1 billion in February as a decline in exports more than offset a slight dip in imports.

The February gap between what America buys from abroad compared to what it sells abroad jumped 4.8% above the revised January deficit of $67.8 billion, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.

The increase reflected a 2.6% decline in exports of goods and services to $187.3 billion on a seasonally adjusted basis. That wiped out a 0.7% decline in imports, which ticked down from January’s record high of $260.1 billion.

The February goods deficit of $87.1 billion was also the highest on record.

The year-to-date trade deficit after two months of 2021 is $138.9 billion, more than 68% higher than the $82.4 billion for January and February of 2020.

The goods deficit with China grew 11.4% from January to $30.3 billion in February, while the goods deficit with Mexico shrank 42.9% from $11.9 billion to $6.8 billion.

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