Chris Williamson, chief economist at financial information firm Markit, in referral to the figures which could result in a revision of the a 0.1 per cent annualized contraction in gross domestic product (GDP) during the quarter computed prior to its availability, said “The economy did not fare so badly as the initial GDP assessment suggested in the fourth quarter of 2012, and the data likewise tantamount to an increasingly bright picture of the global economy at the turn of the year”.
The United States trade gap with the rest of the world dropped to $38.5 billion (approx. L24.3 billion) in December last year to a near three-year low, according to the US Commerce Department.
The data revealed overseas sales of petroleum hiked up the country’s exports, while imports decreased as crude oil importations declined to the lowest level since 1997, during the year 2012.
Total exportations of various products rose substantially to $186.4 billion, more than $3.9 billion increase from November last year, whereas, total importations decreased to $224.9 billion, $6.2 billion lower then November’s figures, as reported.
These figures constitute an additional 0.7 percentage points to the country’s economic growth during the fourth quarter, according to Jim O’Sullivan, the chief US economist at High Frequency Economics.
However, the US trade gap with China increased dramatically to $315 billion, the largest gap ever recorded with any country, owing to the unfairly weak currency of China which affected the irritated American manufacturers, and probably due to various political issues the US government is currently involved in with Asian nations.
Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, urged the government to implement necessary measures to curtail currency manipulation.