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Surprise tumble in US trade deficit

THE United States trade deficit plunged unexpectedly in February to the lowest level in more than nine years as the steep recession pushed imports down for a seventh straight month while US exports managed a small rebound.

The Commerce Department yesterday said the deficit dropped a sharp 28.3 percent to US$25.97 billion, the smallest gap since November 1999. It marked the seventh consecutive month the trade deficit has declined as the severe US recession has cut sharply into demand for imported products. The deficit with China fell 31 percent to the lowest level in three years.


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