News Summary: US growth higher on more exports

News Summary: US trade gap shrinks to 3-year low on export gains; Q4 growth probably stronger

Associated Press

TRADE GAP SHRINKS: The U.S. trade deficit narrowed 21 percent in December from November to $38.6 billion because energy exports rose and oil imports plummeted. It was the lowest trade gap in nearly three years.

ENERGY SHRINKS DEFICIT: Total exports rose 2.1 percent to $186 billion, driven in part by record exports of gasoline, diesel and other fuels. Imports declined 2.7 percent to $225 billion. Oil imports plunged to 223 million barrels — the fewest in 15 years.

SIGN OF GROWTH: The smaller deficit suggests the economy grew in the October-December quarter instead of shrinking as the government estimated last week.

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