US current account deficit up 3.7 percent in Q1

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. current account trade deficit widened from January through March as Americans earned less from overseas investments.

The Commerce Department says the deficit increased 3.7 percent in the first quarter to $106.1 billion. That’s up a revised $102.3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2012.

The current account is the broadest measure of trade. It tracks not only the sale of goods and services but also investment flows and how much the U.S. must borrow from foreigners. The first-quarter deficit was equal to 2.7 percent of the total economy, up from 2.6 percent in the previous quarter.

For the first quarter, the deficit in goods fell $3.3 billion. The surplus in services, such as airline travel, increased $454 million. And Americans’ surplus in their overseas investments fell $5 billion.

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