- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 17, 2008

WASHINGTON, Sept 17, 2008 (AFP) - The US current account deficit widened to $183.1 billion in the second quarter of 2008, from a downwardly revised $175.6 billion in the first quarter, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.

The deficit rose due to an increase in the trade deficit on goods and a decrease in the surplus on income, according to the statement.

The deficit on goods increased to $216.3 billion in the second quarter from $211 billion in the first.

The account deficit is the broadest measure of the flow of goods, services and capital in and out of the US In the second quarter, the deficit totaled 5.1 percent of the US gross domestic product, up slightly from 5.0 percent in the first quarter.

Income receipts on U.S.-owned assets abroad decreased to $194.1 billion in the second quarter from $199.1 billion in the first quarter.

Foreign residents’ acquisitions of U.S. assets slowed significantly in the period from June-August. They increased $26.3 billion, compared to an increase of $459 billion in the first quarter.

U.S.-owned assets abroad also fell to $110.4 billion in the same period, from $260.6 billion in the first quarter.

The U.S. also slowed its purchases of foreign securities and stocks. It also reduced direct investments abroad to $65.5 billion in the second quarter, down from $89.1 billion in the first quarter.

Also on Wednesday, the first quarter account deficit was revised to $175.6 billion, from $176.4 billion.

Third quarter account deficit figures will be released December 17.

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