Baldrige predicts lower trade deficit next quarter

Commerce Secretary Malcolm Baldrige predicted on Monday a lower United States trade deficit in the fourth quarter, even though he admitted that many economists will disagree. ``I want to be fair and say many economists probably think it is too early to call a turn yet, but I don't. I think we've made the turn,'' he said on NBC's ``Today'' television show.

Secretary Baldrige's comments came in response to last week's release of figures showing an October trade deficit of just over $12 billion. This October deficit was 15 percent less than the monthly average for the first nine months of 1986.

Some economists have taken this as a sign that the US trade deficit may have turned a long-awaited corner. Others disagree, however, using the third-quarter deficit as an example. They point out that the third-quarter deficit was actually 10.2 percent higher than the previous quarter.

In reference to that increase, Baldrige said on Monday, ``If you left out oil shipments, even with the latest figures we have, we were running about $2 billion less than we were in the second quarter.''

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
QR Code to Baldrige predicts lower trade deficit next quarter
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today