Trade News: Numbers Game: Recent World Trade Facts & Statistics

From BEA International Economics Accounts: U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services. The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, through the Department of Commerce, announced that total June exports of $170.9 billion and imports of $223.9 billion resulted in a goods and services deficit of $53.1 billion. In response, WITA published the following article by the Los Angeles times.  

From WITA — Washington International Trade Association: U.S. trade deficit widens. American producers sold fewer industrial engines, electric generators and farm products to the rest of the world in June, pushing the trade deficit to the highest level since 2008 and dealing another blow to an already struggling economy.  We get numbed by numbers and forget the importance and realities underneath the digits and zeros.  

From International Trade: U.S. Trade Deficit and the Impact of Changing Oil Prices. With oil prices rising to over $100 per barrel in early 2011, the International Energy Agency cautioned that the rising price of oil was becoming a threat to the global economic recovery.

From Analyst Insight from Euromonitor International: Is the Global Economy at Risk? Any slowdown in the US economy means global repercussions, however debt worries in the Eurozone and economic problems in Japan have also affected the global economy. View this Video from Euromonitor.

It may be a bit difficult to find any good news about the overall domestic and global economic condition and short-term outlook. Notwithstanding, we discovered a couple noteworthy items.  

From BEA International Economics Accounts. Personal Income for Metropolitan Areas, 2010. Personal income rose in 2010 in all but four of the nation’s 366 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs). Personal income in the metropolitan portion of the United States rose 2.9 percent in 2010 after falling 1.9 percent in 2009. In two of these MSAs—San Jose, California and Washington, D.C.—the rebound in 2010 brought their earnings to new highs after falling in 2008 and 2009. In two of these industries—professional services and the management of companies—the 2010 earnings increase was sufficient for them to recover from the earnings declines in 2008 and 2009. So life is good for managers and professional service folks in D.C and San Jose.  

From National District Export Council: U.S. exporting millions of chopsticks to China as wood shortage grows in Far East. Poplar and sweet gum trees are ideal for chopsticks, and Georgia Chopsticks produces chopsticks. Founder Jae Lee says people thought he was crazy. More than 60 billion sets of chopsticks are produced every year in China, so you’d have thought they would be making enough. But a chopstick shortage is growing in the Far East, prompting a U.S. company in Georgia to start exporting millions to the country. Georgia Chopsticks is producing an incredible two million sets of the utensils every day.  Hey, you gotta start somewhere to reverse the trade deficit, particularly with China… one chopstick at a time.  

Also from the above: Green Fields: Iowa farmers outproduce China & Canada.  In 2010, Iowa produced 55 million tons of grain, mostly corn, on about 13 million acres, compared with 45 million tons of corn and wheat in Canada on 30 million acres.  With soybeans, Iowa produced 13 million tons in 2010 while China produced 15 million tons, mirroring their average production figures over the past five years. While Iowa has less than 10 million acres in soybeans, China has 22 million acres. Yield per acre in Iowa is 1.4 tons, exactly double the 0.7 tons of China.

Looking to the America’s heartland, our essential entrepreneurial spirit and the inherent diversity of our populace may provide some hope for our economic future.

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