The Banking and Strategy Initiative

Chillin' out till it needs to be funded

US Economy: Trade deficit near $46 bln for month. Petroleum deficit down to $28 bln. Jobs deficit 380,000

Yesterday Export and Import prices jumped 0.8% and 1.3%, up largely on the imports bearing the prices of Oil. Export prices were stronger on US leading agri exports in wheat, Corn, rice and others as well while Beef exports bring in more cash. Mexico and korea imported more than 11,000 MT and 1000 MT respectively in a single week in March and March will be even better for the dfeficit unless Oil buying is not done yet. A new oil sheen in the Gulf ensures oil remains the bane of US governance.

However Jobless claims broke ranks from the new normal of 350,000 to come back to the 400,000 high watermark of last year at 380,000. As you can see in the Econoday chart the Jobless rate was nose down till last week bu thtis number is likely to show a significant reversal unless the next few weeks are back to the 350k mark. Is someone registering for Jobless claims from the “been out of the labor force for a while” class?

PPI ex Fod and Fuels is up 0.3% higher than expected but TIPS remain negative on inflation perception

Trade deficit improved drastically from last month’s $52.6 bln. It  was also above $50 bln in December. Though details are likely to pour in only later, the Petroleum deficit likely than the non Oil goods deficit has made the difference and Services sExpourplus holding steady at $15 bln

Imports from China held at a massive  $430 bln for the quarter but all indications ar ethat Exports grew at an even pace with china being also an important cog in the Services Surplus. Korean shipments to the U S jumped 28% and Japanese major Honda continued to deliver from American plants as it comes back to normal following manufacturing disruption in Japan.

The $181 bln in exports beget a $225 bln in imports in Feb 2012. Surpluses remained with Hongkong, Singapore and korea while the deficit with China reduced by $7 bln to $19 bln. The deficit from EU and Germany was also down 30% to $5.6 bln/$3.6 bln. The Non petroleum goods deficit was down to $33 bln, Petroleum deficit $28 bln while the Services surplus was $15.4 bln


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