WINNING: US Trade Deficit Soars To Ten-Year High

Bloomberg reports:

The U.S. trade deficit widened in 2018 to a 10-year high of $621 billion, bucking President Donald Trump’s pledges to reduce it, as tax cuts boosted domestic demand for imports while the strong dollar and retaliatory tariffs weighed on exports.

The annual deficit in goods and services increased by $68.8 billion, or 12.5 percent, Commerce Department data showed Wednesday.

The December gap jumped from the prior month to $59.8 billion, also a 10-year high and wider than the median estimate of economists. The merchandise-trade deficit with China — the principal target of Trump’s trade war — hit a record $419.2 billion in 2018.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

Excluding services that the U.S. sells to foreigners, such as tourism, intellectual property and banking, the deficit grew 10% to $891.25 billion, the largest level on record.

Economists say the shortfall was fueled, ironically, by another Trump administration policy: tax cuts and spending increases that juiced demand from U.S. consumers and businesses at a time when growth in the rest of the world was slowing.