WASHINGTON (AP) - The trade deficit narrowed significantly in July as exports climbed to the highest level in nearly two years, reflecting big gains in sales of U.S.-made airplanes and other manufactured goods while imports declined.
The Commerce Department says the July deficit fell 14 percent to $42.8 billion, much lower than economists' had forecast. The lower trade deficit should give a boost to overall economic growth.
Exports rose 1.8 percent to $153.3 billion, the best showing since August 2008, as sales of jetliners, industrial machinery, computers and telecommunications equipment all posted large gains. Imports, which had been surging, dropped 2.1 percent to $196.1 billion.