Washington, Feb 6 (EFE).- The United States' trade deficit shrank to $471.53 billion in 2013, down nearly 12 percent from the previous year's total of $534.66 billion, thanks to a fourth straight year of record exports, the Commerce Department said Thursday.
Exports of goods and services rose 2.8 percent to $2.27 trillion last year, while imports fell slightly to $2.74 trillion.
The trade deficit, however, rose 12 percent to a larger-than-forecast $38.7 billion in December, when exports slipped 1.8 percent from a record $194.79 billion in November.
Exports declined in a range of sectors in the final month of 2013, while imports rose to meet seasonal demand from holiday shoppers.
The United States' trade deficit with Latin America and the Caribbean fell 43.3 percent for all of 2013, although its trade gap with China increased from $315.1 billion in 2012 to $318.42 billion last year. EFE
(c) 2014 EFE News Services (U.S.) Inc.
Original headline: U.S. trade deficit narrows by nearly 12 pct in 2013
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