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The goods data are compiled from the documents collected by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and reflect the movement of goods between foreign countries and the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and U.S. Foreign Trade Zones. They include government and non-government shipments of goods, and exclude shipments between the United States and its territories and possessions, transactions with U.S. military, diplomatic and consular installations abroad, U.S. goods returned to the United States by its Armed Forces, personal and household effects of travelers, and in-transit shipments. The General Imports value reflects the total arrival of merchandise from foreign countries that immediately enters consumption channels, warehouses, or Foreign Trade Zones. Imports for Consumption measure the total of merchandise that has physically cleared through Customs either entering consumption channels immediately or entering after withdrawal for consumption from bonded warehouses under Customs custody or from Foreign Trade Zones.
For imports, the value reported is the U.S. Customs and Border Protection appraised value of merchandise; generally, the price paid for merchandise for export to the United States. Import duties, freight, insurance, and other charges incurred in bringing merchandise to the United States are excluded.
Exports are valued at the free alongside ship (f.a.s) value of merchandise at the U.S. port of export, based on the transaction price including inland freight, insurance and other charges incurred in placing the merchandise alongside the carrier at the U.S. port of exportation.
Monthly data include actual month's transactions as well as a small number of transactions for previous months. SITC and country detail data are not revised monthly. These data are revised annually to eliminate "carry-over" (that portion of the monthly statistics that arrives too late for inclusion in the transaction month) and to include errata (corrections to the published monthly data).
To facilitate positive adjustment to competition from imports of certain steel products, in March 2002 the President signed into law a relief program for the domestic steel industry. This program has come to be known as "Steel 201" named after Section 201 of the Trade Act of 1974. For more information on Section 201 Steel Products, see the United States Trade Representative (USTR) steel section at: www.ustr.gov/sectors/industry/steel201/background.htm [Not a Census web site].
The data for U.S. exports to Canada are derived from import data compiled by Canada. The use of Canada's import data to produce U.S. export data requires several alignments in order to compare the two series.
Effective with January 2001 statistics, the current month data for exports to Canada contain an estimate for late arrivals and corrections. The following month, this estimate will be replaced, in the press release tables only, with the actual value of late receipts and corrections. This estimate will improve the current month data for exports to Canada and treat late receipts for exports to Canada in a manner more consistent with the treatment of late receipts for exports to other countries.
Goods are initially classified under the Harmonized System (HS) which describes and measures the characteristics of goods traded. Combining trade into approximately 140 export and 140 import end-use categories makes it possible to examine goods according to their principal uses. These categories are used as the basis for computing the seasonal and working-day adjusted data. These adjusted data are then summed to the six end-use aggregates for publication. These data are provided to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, from the U.S. Census Bureau, for use in the Balance of Payments and the National Income and Product Accounts.
The seasonal adjustment procedure is based on a model that estimates the monthly movements as percentages above or below the general level of each end-use commodity series (unlike other methods that redistribute the actual series values over the calendar year). Imports of petroleum and petroleum products are adjusted for the length of the month. Because of the extremely variable movements of the data series for aircraft, users studying data trends may wish to analyze aircraft separately from other trade.
The goods data are a complete enumeration of documents collected by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and are not subject to sampling errors; but they are subject to several types of nonsampling errors. Quality assurance procedures are performed at every stage of collection, processing and tabulation; however the data are still subject to several types of nonsampling errors. The most significant of these include reporting errors, undocumented shipments, timeliness, data capture errors, and errors in the estimation of low-valued transactions:
The U. S. Census Bureau recommends that data users incorporate this information into their analyses, as nonsampling errors could impact the conclusion drawn from the results. For a detailed discussion of errors affecting the goods data, see "U.S. Merchandise Trade Statistics: A Quality Profile" available on the Internet at: www.census.gov/foreign-trade/aip/index.html#infopapers.
The Census Bureau began suppressing export data for certain 10-digit Schedule B commodity classifications related to the aircraft industry with the release of the January 2009 FT-900 U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services. To account for the suppression of commodity detail, the Census Bureau will begin publishing a new commodity classification series titled “Civilian Aircraft, Engines, Equipment, and Parts”.
Goods export data from January 2004 through December 2008 will be revised as a result of analysis of the aircraft industry. The 2004 – 2008 revisions will be reflected in both the April FT-900 and the FT-900 Annual Revision to be released on June 10, 2009 and in all standard revised Foreign Trade Division data products. Please note that not all Census Bureau publications or data products will be updated with these revisions. Information on revised data products is available at http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/notices/aircraft/products.html.
The suppression of commodity detail impacts all classification systems, including End-use, Standard International Trade Classification System (SITC), North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), and Advanced Technology Product (ATP). All exhibits will show the new classification codes. A complete list of affected classification systems and codes is available at http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/notices/aircraft/codes.html.
All data products will be published using the below pseudo codes:
Africa - Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, British Indian Ocean Territories, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Kinshasa), Cote d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, French Southern and Antarctic, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Reunion, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, St Helena, Sudan,Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Western Sahara, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) - Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam.
ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) - Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam.
Asia Near East - Bahrain, Gaza Strip Administered by Israel, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, United Arab Emirates, West Bank Administered by Israel, Yemen.
Asia - South - Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka.
CAFTA - DR (Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement) - Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua.
Central American Common Market - Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua.
Euro Area - Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain.
Europe - Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Svalbard, Jan Mayen Island, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uzbekistan, Vatican City.
European Union - Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom.
LAFTA (Latin American Free Trade Area) - Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela.
NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) Allies - Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom.
NICS (Newly Industrialized Countries) - Hong Kong, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan.
North America - Canada, Mexico.
OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) - Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, South, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom.
OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) - Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela.
Pacific Rim Countries - Australia, Brunei, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Macau, Malaysia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan.
South/Central America - Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Sint Maarten, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, Uruguay, Venezuela.
Twenty Latin American Republics - Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela.
Source: FTDWebMaster, Foreign
Trade Division, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, D.C. 20233
Location: MAIN: REFERENCE: GUIDES
Created: 30 June 2003
Last modified: 12 July 2011 at 04:02:25 PM