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- Trade deficit increases 1.8% in December
- Imports rise 1.6%; exports gain 1.5%
- Deficit surges 27.0% to $859.1 billion in 2021
WASHINGTON, Feb 8 (Reuters) – The U.S. trade deficit surged to a record high in 2021 as imports increased sharply amid the restocking of shelves by businesses to meet robust domestic demand.
The sharp widening in the trade gap reported by the Commerce Department on Tuesday mostly reflected a shift in spending toward goods from services during the COVID-19 pandemic. With businesses eager to rebuild depleted inventories against the backdrop of stretched global supply chains, the deficit is unlikely to shrink much this year, cutting into…