The U.S. registered an ag trade balance of just $111 million in March, the smallest trade balance since May 2017 when the trade balance dipped to a negative $46 million. That’s down nearly $818 million from February.
Ag exports climbed nearly $1.2 billion from February to $12.1 million in March, but ag imports climbed an even greater $2.0 billion to $11.9 billion, which translated to the narrow trade balance.
Halfway into the 2019 fiscal year, the U.S. trade balance stands at $4.801 billion, a dramatic 56% drop from the $10.942 billion trade balance registered last year at this point. For reference, the total trade surplus for FY 2018 ended at $15.812 billion, painting a grim picture for where the U.S. ag trade balance may end FY 2019.
|U.S. Agricultural Trade 1|
|Fiscal years||Fiscal year to date||March|
|Trade balance 3||25.522||16.575||21.097||15.812||10.942||4.801||0.111|
|Calendar years||Calendar year to date||March|
|Sources: USDA, Economic Research Service, using data summed from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census|