November 05, 2012
Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement partners, Canada and Mexico, was 2.6% higher in August 2012 than in August 2011. Trade totaled $82.5 billion, unadjusted for inflation, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Adjusted for inflation and exchange rates, the August 2012 total was $60.5 billion in 2004 dollars, up 5.2% from August 2011. BTS, a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the August 2012 value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico rose 52% from August 2009, shortly after the end of the last recession. The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in August increased by 76.5% compared to August 2002, a period of 10 years. Imports in August were up 63.2% since August 2002, while exports were up 94.2%. Surface transportation includes freight movements by truck, rail, pipeline, mail, other modes of transport, and goods moving into Foreign Trade Zones. In August, 87.2% of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moved via land, 8.9% moved by vessel, and 3.9% moved by air. The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico increased 9% in August 2012 from July 2012. Month-to-month changes can be affected by seasonal variations, the number of days in each month, and other factors. U.S.-Mexico trade in August 2012 reached $35.5 billion, a 7.8% increase from August 2011, while U.S.-Canada trade was $47 billion, a 1% decrease due to a decrease in imports from Canada.For the 12-month period ending in August 2012, U.S. trade by surface transportation with Mexico has increased, while U.S. trade with Canada decreased. In August, Michigan led all states in surface trade with Canada, at $6.8 billion, a 5.8% increase from August 2011. Of the top ten states by value in trade with Canada, California had the largest percentage increase over August 2011, at 21%, primarily due to a 71.4% increase in trade in vehicles. The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Canada by surface modes of transportation in August was vehicles, valued at $9.6 billion. Texas continued to lead all states in surface trade with Mexico at $13.1 billion, a 10.2% increase from August 2011. Of the top 10 states by value in trade with Mexico, North Carolina had the biggest percentage increase, 24.1%, closely followed by Michigan at 23.3%. North Carolina had a 96.3% increase in electrical machinery trade, while Michigan had a 29.4% increase in trade in vehicles. The top commodity category transported between the U.S. and Mexico by surface modes of transportation in August was electrical machinery with $7.6 billion in trade.