Among Top 10 U.S. Trade Partners, There Are Just Three Bright Spots



Ken Roberts | Forbes

Switzerland, Vietnam and Taiwan are the only bright spots among the United States top trade partners in 2020, which account for about two-thirds of all U.S. trade with the world.

With overall U.S. trade down 12.19 percent, here’s a quick rundown of the top 10, and what is fueling — or not fueling — exports and imports this year, according to data released last week by the U.S. Census Bureau:

  1. Mexico, which finished as the United States’ top trade partner in 2019 for the first time ever, still ranks No. 1 this year, though that appears unlikely to continue through the end of the year. Through September, U.S.-Mexico trade was off 16.87% to $386.02 million. Its trade was down narrowly in September, when compared to the previous September, 3.21 percent. Biggest industry taking a beating this year: automotive, from parts to vehicles, and gasoline.
  2. China, which saw its trade increase better than 8% in September when overall U.S. trade was off 3.82% when compared to the previous September, is still down for the year. Through the first nine months of the year, U.S.-China trade is off 8.3%. In September, U.S. exports to China increased 34%, led by a sharp increase in soybeans and a steady increase in oil. China will likely overtake Mexico to once again reign as the United States’ top trade partner, a position it held for three years prior to slipping behind Mexico.

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