2-27-18 10:06 AM EST | Email Article
By Anthony Harrup 

MEXICO CITY -- Mexico ran up a $4.41 billion trade deficit in January, wider than the $3.47 billion trade gap a year earlier as import growth outpaced that of exports.

Exports increased 12.5% from the year-earlier month to $30.73 billion, and imports were 14.1% higher at $35.14 billion, the National Statistics Institute said Tuesday.

Petroleum trade accounted for $1.55 billion of last month's deficit, while the shortfall in nonpetroleum goods trade amounted to $2.86 billion. Petroleum exports rose 24.1% as oil prices recovered from a year earlier, and imports of gasoline and other fuels rose 14.8%.

Non-oil exports grew 11.6% to $28.4 billion, including a 10.5% rise in shipments abroad of manufactured goods to $26.32 billion.

Imports of intermediate goods, such as components used in manufacturing processes, rose 13% to $26.44 billion, and imports of equipment and machinery were up 18.8% at $3.76 billion. Consumer goods imports excluding petroleum jumped 19.3% to $3.45 billion.

The increase in January trade from a year before followed a strong 2017, when Mexican exports increased 9.5% to a record $409 billion and imports grew 8.6% to $420 billion, also a record.

The U.S. is the biggest recipient of Mexican exports, accounting for 80%. Mexico had a $71 billion trade surplus with the U.S. last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, up from a $64 billion surplus in 2016.

Narrowing the deficit with Mexico is among the aims of the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump in renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement. A seventh round of talks between the U.S., Mexico and Canada is under way in Mexico City this week.

Write to Anthony Harrup at anthony.harrup@wsj.com


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 27, 2018 10:06 ET (15:06 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2018 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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