ERJ staff report (R&PN)
Washington DC - The US rubber product trade deficit grew again in October as trade activity for 2011 continued to run much higher than in 2010.
The monthly shortfall grew 13.7 percent to $835.7 million, according to data collected by the US Commerce Department. Exports increased 12 percent to $878.4 million but imports climbed even more, rising 12.9 percent to $1.71 billion. For the first 10 months of 2011, the deficit jumped 26.4 percent to $8.44 billion.
There has been a shift in the trade balance on the rubber supply side of the business. The sector traditionally ran a trade surplus but that changed as the value of natural rubber imports skyrocketed through the first 10 months of 2011.
During October 2011, the supply sector posted a shortfall of $60.9 million, compared with a surplus of $90.4 million a year earlier, the Commerce Department data showed.
The deficit came because of 67-percent growth in NR imports to $386.8 million, bolstered by record-setting NR prices. For the year, the supply side had a deficit of $755.3 million, after recording a $512.1 million surplus for the first 10 months of 2010. NR imports for the period jumped 76.9 percent to $4.04 billion.
The NR imports were partially countered with a 23-percent rise in SR exports in October, leaving SR with a trade surplus of nearly $200 million. The SR surplus year-to-date rose 37 percent to $1.92 billion.
From Rubber & Plastics News (A Crain publication)