The U.S. trade deficit unexpectedly widened in September as exports hit a five-month low, suggesting slowing global demand could undercut economic growth in the final three months of the year.
The Commerce Department said on Tuesday the trade gap increased 7.6 percent to $43.03 billion. August's trade deficit was revised to $39.99 billion from a previously reported $40.11 billion shortfall.
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Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the deficit narrowing slightly to $40.00 billion. When adjusted for inflation, the trade deficit increased to $50.76 billion from $48.22 billion.
September's shortfall in the overall trade balance is bigger than the $38.1 billion deficit that the government had assumed in its advance gross domestic product (GDP) estimate for the third quarter published last week.