WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement after today’s announcement from the U.S. Department of Commerce that the U.S. trade deficit in goods and services decreased to $50.1 billion, down from $52.6 billion the previous month.
“We saw the trade deficit narrow slightly in April. However, continued currency manipulation by China continues to put us at a disadvantage. American workers and manufacturers need a level playing field in order to compete in the international market. American jobs are at risk if we continue to allow China to trade unfairly.
“The Senate passed the Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform Act eight months ago, but the House of Representatives has yet to act on it. Earlier this week, I urged House Speaker John Boehner to follow the Senate’s lead and pass their version of the bill, which has over 200 bipartisan cosponsors. The U.S. Treasury Department has indicated that China continues to devalue the renminbi. Doing so enables China to drive down the price of their exports, giving them an unfair advantage over their trading counterparts.
“According to the Economic Policy Institute, these actions have greatly affected our trade deficit with China and have cost 2.8 million American jobs in the last decade. The longer the House delays the passage of this bill, the more American jobs are at stake. We must act quickly to make sure our workers and manufacturers have every opportunity to prosper in the international market.”
Data released today from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis show that the U.S. trade deficit in goods and services narrowed by $2.5 billion. Imports of goods and services declined by $4.1 billion while exports fell by $1.5 billion. The over-the-month decline in the international trade deficit was the result of a $2.7 billion decrease in the international trade in goods, which partly reflected slowing goods trade between the U.S. and the Euro Area. The $1.2 billion decline in the international goods trade deficit with the Euro Area was the result of a $3.0 billion decline in goods imports and $1.8 billion decrease in goods exports. The U.S. trade deficit with China, also restricted to not seasonally adjusted goods only, grew by $2.9 billion in April reflecting both a $1.5 billion decline in imports and $1.4 billion decrease in exports.