Posted February 6, 2015
Wall Street Journal: The U.S. oil boom is redrawing America’s trade picture.
Petroleum imports accounted for less than 20% of the nation’s trade deficit last year, down from more than 40% only five years earlier, according to figures for 2014 released Thursday.
But the overall U.S. appetite for overseas goods didn’t diminish over the period, which started with the global economy’s first full year of expansion after the 2007-09 recession. Imports of just about everything else have surged as Americans substitute other goods for foreign oil, leaving a growing trade deficit.
“If we hadn’t had this oil boom I think our deficit would be lot larger than it is right now,” said IHS Global Insight economist Patrick Newport. “It’s a game-changer.”