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That means Trump's presidency will have seen the U.S. trade deficit-the main metric by which his judges countries to be winning or losing-grow by more than $100 billion.

"Billions of dollars, right now, are pouring into our Treasury", he told the Conservative Political Action Conference, adding that Chinese exporters are absorbing nearly the entire burden of the tariffs.

Wall Street stocks finished as they started on Wednesday - in the red - as investors continued to keep an eye on any trade developments between the U.S. and China. It is, by and large, an accounting measure that often moves in directions inverse to the health of the USA economy.

A 1.9 percent drop in exports of goods and services drove the trade deficit in December to US$59.8 billion, the largest since October 2008.

There are a few takeaways from this news, including that trade was probably a bigger drag on growth past year than previously forecast. "It's not an accident. When things are booming we consume more imports".

These measures have had the opposite effect and his tax policies have boosted U.S. consumption, with a lot of that spending going to other countries. But last year's higher US trade gap resulted mainly from the economy's strength, notably robust spending on imports. But Trump has consistently singled out the trade gap as a target in his America First policies.

The US trade deficit has hit a 10-year high, it was revealed on Wednesday in a government announcement, as Donald Trump's trade wars appeared to be backfiring.

Imports of goods ($2.6-trillion) and services ($557.9bn) reached new all-time highs, the report showed.

Kelly's Insane 'CBS This Morning' Interview
The interview also became heated when King questioned the sexual nature of the Kelly's relationship with both Clary and Savage. He claimed that he recently went to the bank, supposedly for the first time ever, to take control of and rearrange his funds.

In 2016, it was $502 billion.

The strength of the US dollar has also not been helpful to the administration's aims, as it makes imports relatively cheaper while increasing the price of USA products to the rest of the world.

Ironically, as NPR's Jim Zarroli writes, the 2017 tax cuts championed by Trump likely had more to do with the growing trade deficit than the tariffs did. They and other Democrats should stop mimicking Trump's economic silliness, pledge to end trade wars, vow to open up markets and then outline a generous and comprehensive package to address workers and regions adversely impacted by trade. So far, Washington has imposed tariffs on almost $250 billion of Chinese imports. The US, which also slapped duties on imported steel, aluminum, solar panels and washing machines, had record imports from 60 countries in 2018, led by China, Mexico and Germany.

To rub that point in, despite the tariffs on $US250 billion of China's exports to the U.S., the deficit on the trade in goods with China was a record $US419 billion.

Another factor was the decision by the US Federal Reserve to increase interest rates four times in 2018.

In the view of the vast majority of economists, trade wars of the kind Trump has instigated benefit no one in the long run.

But advocates of a stronger U.S. currency policy argue that Trump himself carries plenty of blame.

Trump entered office insisting that decades of trade gaps had crushed the USA economy and that he would forge new agreements that would diminish the deficits. There is a strong likelihood Trump might walk away from the ongoing trade talks with China. The broader goods and services deficit reached $621.0 billion in 2018, an increase of $68.8 billion (12.5 percent). To his mind that means the U.S.'s trade balance is worse than even the official data reflects.