Canada Trade Deficit Narrows in October to C$1.47 Billion


October imports were $244.6 billion, $3.8 billion more than September imports.

Boosted by a weaker U.S. dollar, the October trade gap rose 8.6 per cent compared to September, to US$48.7 billion, the highest since January, surpassing analyst expectations for an increase of only 5.6 per cent.

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If export growth continues to stall in November and December while imports continue to pick up, gross domestic product, a measure for US economic growth, could be significantly lower in 2017's last quarter than it was in previous quarters. Economists had expected the deficit to widen to USD47.5 billion. Conventional economists argue that trade deficits are largely caused not by flawed trade agreements or cheating by particular countries but by a bigger economic force: Americans spend more than they produce, and imports have to fill in the gap. The overall trade deficit widened 11.9% so far this year compared with the same period in 2016.

Meanwhile, imports fell 1.6 per cent to $45.9 billion in October, mainly due to a drop in motor vehicles and parts. Imports increased $146.6 billion or 6.5%.

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The goods deficit increased 5.9% to $69.1 billion, while the services surplus shrunk slightly to $20.3 billion.

Historically speaking, the US imports more good than it exports, but runs a modest trade surplus for services.

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Imports of mobile phones rose US$300 million as did transportation services.