News Summary: US growth higher on more exports

AP News
Posted: Feb 08, 2013 5:34 PM

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.