2017 Economic Calendar
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International Trade in Goods  
Released On 3/28/2017 8:30:00 AM For Feb, 2017
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Balance$-69.2 B$-68.8 B$-66.5 B$-67.5 B to $-65.0 B$-64.8 B
Exports % change-0.3 %0.3 %-0.1 %
Imports % change2.3 %2.5 %-2.1 %

A sharp 2.1 percent drop in imports helped to narrow a smaller-than-expected $64.8 billion goods deficit in February, masking however another weak showing for exports which edged 0.1 percent lower. Goods imports totaled $191.6 billion in February with easing demand for consumer goods and vehicles which were both very strong in January. Exports totaled $126.8 billion in the month as industrial supplies fell back after a strong January showing while the key category of capital goods fell sharply for a second month. Foods exports were also down.

Also released with this report are advance data on wholesale and retail inventories, both of which rose 0.4 percent in February. These inventory readings may help GDP estimates, where inventory builds are a positive, but not the outlook for production and employment which may suffer if the builds, during this period of slow growth, turn out in fact to be unwanted. Note that the next advance report will include updated seasonal adjustments for goods trade.

Consensus Outlook
Strong imports of consumer goods and vehicles more than offset export strength in industrial supplies to set back the trade balance in January. Forecasters see the nation's trade gap in goods narrowing in February to $66.5 billion from January's oversized $69.7 billion. Goods exports have been improving, starting 2016 at about $120 billion per month and moving up to about $125 billion by year's end. But imports of goods also trended higher, moving from $180 billion to $190 billion.

The Census Bureau is now publishing an advance report on U.S. international trade in goods. The Bureau of Economic Analysis will incorporate these data into its estimates of exports and imports for the advance GDP estimates. This is expected to reduce the size of revisions to GDP growth in the second estimates.

Note that data in the advance goods report are accounted for on a census basis and can differ slightly from subsequent data in the international trade report where goods data are accounted for on a balance of payment basis to adjust for changes in ownership that can occur without goods passing into or out of the US.  Why Investors Care

2017 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/262/283/284/275/256/287/278/289/2810/2611/2812/28
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov

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