The U.S. trade deficit rose 4.4% in June to $53.1 billion as exports fell by the most in two-and-a-half years, the Commerce Department said Thursday.
The gap rose from a revised $50.8 billion in May, which was slightly higher than originally reported.
The increase topped economists’ forecasts, Bloomberg reported.
Exports fell 2.3% to %1709.9 million, the biggest decline since January 2009. U.S. shipments of computer and capital goods fell, Bloomberg said.
Imports slipped 0.8% to $223.9 billion, Bloomberg reported. Imports from Japan jumped 14% to $9.5 billion following that country’s March earthquake and tsunami that had lowered April and May levels.
Automobile shipments from Japan rose to $2.7 billion, from $2 billion, though ongoing parts disruptions were still depressing sales, Bloomberg said.