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NOTICE - Upcoming Revisions to Goods and Services and Comprehensive Restructuring of the International Accounts

On June 4, 2014, the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) will release “U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services: April 2014” and “U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services: Annual Revision for 2013.” With these releases, statistics on trade in goods on a Census basis will be revised beginning with 2011, and statistics on trade in goods on a balance of payments (BOP) basis and on trade in services will be revised beginning with 1999. The revised statistics on trade in goods on a Census basis will reflect corrections and adjustments to previously published not seasonally adjusted statistics, minor reclassifications of commodities to end-use categories, and recalculated seasonal and trading-day adjustments. The revised statistics on trade in goods on a BOP basis and on trade in services will reflect newly available and revised source data, changes in estimation methods, and changes in definitions and classifications. The revised statistics will also be included in “U.S. International Transactions: First Quarter 2014” and in the annual revision of the U.S. International Transactions Accounts (ITAs), both to be released by BEA on June 18, 2014.

With this year’s annual revision, BEA will also introduce a new presentation of the ITAs, including a new presentation of services, as part of a comprehensive restructuring of BEA’s international economic accounts. This change in presentation, combined with the changes in definitions and classifications, will bring the statistics into closer alignment with international guidelines. Additional information on BEA’s comprehensive restructuring of the international accounts was presented in the March 2014 Survey of Current Business, and preview table templates for the restructured presentation of the ITAs are available at www.bea.gov/iTable/iTable.cfm?ReqID=62&step=1#reqid=62&step=1&isuri=1. Changes that will impact the “U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services” release are discussed below.

Goods on a BOP Basis

Net exports of goods under merchanting, which are currently included in trade in services under other private services, will be reclassified to goods through a new BOP adjustment. These net exports reflect the net value of goods that are purchased and subsequently sold abroad without entering the United States. Because these goods don’t cross the U.S. customs frontier, their value is not recorded in the data for goods on a Census basis. BOP adjustments—adjustments that BEA applies to goods on a Census basis to convert them to a BOP basis—are combined and presented as net adjustments in this release.

Services

The services categories shown in Exhibits 3 and 4 will change, and the number of categories will increase from seven to nine. The new categories will be: maintenance and repair services n.i.e. (not included elsewhere); transport; travel (for all purposes including education); insurance services; financial services; charges for the use of intellectual property n.i.e.; telecommunications, computer, and information services; other business services; and government goods and services n.i.e.

The current category other transportation will be renamed transport and will include passenger fares, which will no longer be shown as a separate category. Royalties and license fees will be renamed charges for the use of intellectual property n.i.e. Transfers under U.S. military agency sales contracts (for exports), direct defense expenditures (for imports), and U.S. government miscellaneous services (for exports and imports) will become part of government goods and services n.i.e. The definition of travel will be broadened to include health-related and education-related travel and the expenditures on goods and services by border, seasonal, and other short-term workers, all of which are currently included in other private services. To distinguish it from the current measure, the new measure will be called travel (for all purposes including education). Maintenance and repair services n.i.e., financial services, and insurance services, all of which are currently included in other private services, will be shown as separate categories. Other business services will consist of the remaining components of other private services.

Examples of the new presentation for Exhibits 3 and 4 are available at www.bea.gov/newsreleases/international/trade/2014/xls/trad0114_prototype.xls. If you have questions or need additional information, please contact BEA’s Balance of Payments Division at InternationalAccounts@bea.gov.




August 2014
Trade Numbers

Deficit: $40.1 Billion
Exports: $198.5 Billion
Imports: $238.6 Billion

Next release: November 4, 2014
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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Foreign Trade | ftdwebmaster@census.gov |  Last Revised: September 04, 2014