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Key Economic Trends

  • The appreciation of the Brazilian real against the U.S. dollar from January to August 2008 increased Brazilian consumers purchasing power; contributing to the increase in U.S. exports to Brazil and the decline in the U.S. trade deficit with Brazil in 2008.
  • The 34 percent growth in the value of U.S. exports to Brazil was due to increases in the price of petroleum products, coal, coke, and related products in 2008. Crude petroleum prices increased by 40 percent, while the price of coal increased by 78 percent.
  • Supply shortages of primary iron products, along with increased global demand for steel, contributed to a 77 percent increase in U.S. imports of primary iron products from Brazil. Increases in U.S. imports of certain motors and engines were driven by greater demand for wind turbine parts, while the increase in U.S. imports of aircraft, spacecraft, and related equipment was likely due to previous projections by U.S. airlines of strong demand for passenger air traffic in 2008 when orders were placed in 2006.

Trade Shifts in 2008 from 2007

  • U.S. trade deficit: Decreased by $2.3 billion (69 percent) to $1.0 billion
  • U.S. exports: Increased by $7.3 billion (34 percent) to $29.0 billion
  • U.S. imports: Increased by $5.0 billion (20 percent) to $30.1 billion

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