Wall Street subdued as trade deficit widens

<p>Wall Street is subdued as the trade deficit in the US widens.</p>

Wall Street was subdued in trading this afternoon (January 11th) as official data shows the US trade deficit widened in November.

According to a report from the Commerce Department in Washington DC, the gap for the world's largest economy widened to $48.7 billion (£30.1 billion) – an increase of 16 per cent.

Economists and investors had anticipated this figure to indicate shrinkage, but instead the official data climbed to its widest figure recorded since April of last year.

Exports increased by one per cent to $182.6 billion, while imports rallied by 3.8 per cent – the largest rise in eight months – to $231.3 billion.

Imports of consumer goods climbed by $4.6 billion and analysts claim this is a sign the US retail sector is growing stronger thanks to improving consumer spending.

At 16:00 GMT, the Dow Jones was steady at 13466.5 points, while the technology-heavy Nasdaq fell by 0.1 per cent to 3118.3 points.

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