Washington – The US rubber product trade deficit dropped 10.5% in May as trade activity dropped sharply from May 2015.
The shortfall for the month totalled $1.01 billion (€950 million), compared with $1.12 billion a year earlier, according to data from the Department of Commerce. Exports during May decreased 9.7% to $793.6 million, while imports plunged 10.1% to just under $1.8 billion.
Through the first five months of 2016, the deficit fell 3.6 % to $4.87 billion. Exports dropped 8.7% to $3.84 billion, and imports declined 6% to $8.71 billion.
Among individual rubber product categories, the tires and related products trade shortfall dipped 11.9% to $751.7 million. Exports were down 9.3% and imports were off 11 percent. Year to date, the tire trade deficit fell 3.6% to $3.64 billion.
The deficit for miscellaneous hard rubber goods declined 4.9% in May and 4 percent year to date; the shortfall for hose and tubing nearly doubled in May and rose 23.8% through the first five months of 2016; and the belting deficit dropped 39% on the month and 26.9% year to date.
On the supply side, the surplus for May more than doubled to $148.3 million and grew 30.4% year to date to $647.8 million.