Trade Deficit Surges as Congress Considers Trade Agreements: AAM Statement

Washington, D.C. – The Commerce Department released the latest monthly U.S. trade figures this morning. The overall monthly U.S. international goods and services trade deficit grew to $51.4 billion in March, from $35.9 billion in February, revised.

  • The monthly U.S. goods deficit with China increased in March to $37.8 billion, up from $27.3 billion in February. This is the highest monthly deficit with the country on record. 
  • The U.S. goods deficit with Japan increased in March to $6.3 billion, up from $4.3 billion in February.
  • This is the largest monthly trade deficit since October 2008 and the highest trade deficit in goods since August 2008.
  • This also represents the largest monthly expansion in the trade deficit since December 1996.

Said Alliance for American Manufacturing President Scott Paul:

“Now we know what caused the drop in manufacturing jobs in March. A surging trade deficit cuts into GDP growth, displaces factory jobs, and should inform the trade debate.

"The bottom line is this: exchange rates matter, and currency manipulation matters even more. Yet the Obama administration sits idly by while our manufacturing jobs disappear. The administration’s TPP and TPA proposals would do nothing to change the status quo.

"We need stronger tools to combat unfair trade and protect our workers. Currency manipulation must be deterred in our domestic laws and as part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.”