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US trade deficit widens in August on higher imports

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The U.S.A trade deficit rose more than expected in August because a rise in imports offset higher exports.

The Commerce Department said last week that the trade gap widened 3 percent to $40.73 billion. Imports hit their highest level since September 2015, while exports were the highest since July of last year.

In August, exports of goods and services edged up 0.8 percent to $187.85 billion. Exports to China rose 2.6 percent and were up 1.2 percent to the EU. Exports to the United Kingdom rose 2.4 percent.

Imports of goods and services increased 1.2 percent to $228.58 billion in August. Oil prices averaged $39.38 per barrel in August, down 20.2 percent from a year ago.