Current Account deficit falls 9.7%

The nation's current account deficit shrinks to $113.3 BB in the fourth quarter vs a deficit of $125.5 BB in the third quarter. The nation's goods deficit narrowed by $14.6 BB in the quarter with the services surplus widening by $1.3 BB. In offsets, the surplus on investment income fell back by $2.8 BB while unilateral transfers (foreign aid) increased by $1BB to $35.2 BB.

The nation's deficit relative to GDP fell to 3.1% from the third-quarter's 3.4%. But this is fourth-quarter data. Given the higher cost of oil imports, improvement may not extend into the first quarter.  Via BEA:
The U.S. current-account deficit—the combined balances on trade in goods and services, income, and net unilateral current transfers—decreased to $113.3 billion (preliminary) in the fourth quarter of 2010, from $125.5 billion (revised) in the third quarter of 2010. The decrease was more than accounted for by a decrease in the deficit on goods; an increase in the surplus on services also contributed. A decline in the surplus on income and an increase in net unilateral current transfers were partly offsetting.
Business Week review 


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