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US goods trade deficit widens in January

U.S. goods trade deficit widened to $74.40 billion in January 2018 from $72.26 billion in December 2017, compared with Econoday's consensus forecast of a $71.3 billion deficit.

Exports fell to $133.92 billion from $137.00 billion over the period in part due to a 5.2% decrease in capital goods exports and a 3.0% decline in exports of industrial supplies. Exports of consumer goods rose 7.8% and those of automotive vehicles increased 3.6% month over month.

Imports declined to $208.32 billion from $209.26 billion, as imports of capital goods fell 2.4% and those of consumer goods decreased 2.2%. Imports of industrial supplies were up 4.0% from the previous month.

Wholesale inventories, adjusted for seasonal variations but not for price changes, increased 0.7% to $617.65 billion in January 2018 from $613.40 billion in December 2017 and were up 4.5% from January 2017. Retail inventories rose 0.8% to $626.17 billion from $621.08 billion and were up 2.4% from a year earlier.