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Key Economic Trends

  • Trends in U.S. exports of transportation equipment varied among product groups in 2008, with the largest absolute increases being found in exports of construction and mining equipment (up by $5.1 billion, or 22 percent), motor vehicles (up by $4.2 billion, or 8 percent), and aircraft engines and gas turbines (up by $2.9 billion, or 11 percent). U.S. exports of motor vehicles in 2008 rose in large part because of the success of U.S.-built, German-brand motor vehicles in Germany. Exports of aircraft engines and gas turbines rose in response to foreign airlines’ need to service aircraft remaining in service.
  • Canada, Japan, Mexico, and Germany continued to be the four largest trading partners for transportation equipment, accounting for 72 percent of U.S. imports and 44 percent of U.S. exports in transportation equipment in 2008. Changes in U.S. imports among transportation equipment product groups were mixed, with the largest absolute decreases in motor vehicles, certain motor-vehicle parts, and internal-combustion piston engines. Trends in U.S. exports also varied among product groups, with the largest absolute increase in exports of construction and mining equipment, motor vehicles, and aircraft engines and gas turbines.

Trade Shifts in 2008 from 2007

  • U.S. trade deficit: Decreased by $28.7 billion (47 percent) to $31.8 billion
  • U.S. exports: Increased by $7.0 billion (3 percent) to $256.4 billion
  • U.S. imports: Decreased by $21.7 billion (7 percent) to $288.2 billion

Selected Product Shifts

USITC Publications

Peder Andersen, Office of Industries, USITC: "China's Growing Market for Large Civil Aircraft"

Other Government Resources


Other Resources

Aerospace Industries Association

Association of International Automobile Manufacturers

Auto Alliance

Engine Manufacturers Association

General Aviation Manufacturers Association

Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA)

Ward’s Automotive Reports