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U.S. Infotech Industry Briefs January 20, 2018  
U.S. Computer Equipment Trade Summary: 2009

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U.S. Computer Hardware Trade Summary: 2009

Summary
U.S. exports of electronic computer equipment declined nearly 7 percent in 2008 to $26.9 billion, while U.S. computer imports slipped about 3 percent to $86.2 billion. The U.S. trade deficit in computer products totaled $59.2 billion in 2008 (see Figure 1).

Summary
The slowdown in the world economy is reflected in a sharp decline in U.S. exports of electronic computer equipment. Computer exports tumbled 25 percent to $20.1 billion when compared to 2008. However, there was a 5 percent and an 18 percent increase in computer equipment exports in the third and fourth quarter of 2009, which suggest that the outlook may brighten. Meanwhile, U.S. computer imports dropped about 6 percent to $90.1 billion. The U.S. trade deficit in computer products totaled $70 billion in 2009 (see Figure 1).

EXPORTS (US $ millions)
2007
2008
2009
Percent Change
Electronic computers
8,524
8,814
7,007
-20.5
Peripheral equipment
7,133
5,957
4,355
-26.9
Storage devices
2,582
2,232
1,937
-13.2
Computer parts
9,568
9,712
6,767
-30.3
Total
27,808
26,714
20,066
-24.9

IMPORTS (US $ millions)
2007
2008
2009
Percent Change
Electronic computers
38,983
38,787
39,344
1.4
Peripheral equipment
22,983
21,386
17,128
-19.9
Storage devices
12,183
11,338
9,154
-19.3
Computer parts
27,466
24,122
24,472
1.5
Total
101,616
95,634
90,098
-5.8
Trade Deficit
-73.808
-68,920
-70,032
1.6

Exports
U.S. computer exports declined 25 percent to $20.1 billion in 2009, following a 4 percent drop in 2008. All product groupings contributed to the decline, led by computer parts, which dropped 30 percent to $6.8 billion. Peripheral equipment followed, down 27 percent to $4.4 billion; and computers and storage devices fell 21 percent to $7 billion; and 13 percent to $1.9 billion, respectively. Exports of computer parts represent 34 percent of the total, but a significant portion is destined for foreign affiliates or contract manufacturers to support the U.S. global manufacturing base (see Figure 2).

On a regional basis, computer product exports to Latin America, the top regional export destination, fell 25 percent to $5.8 billion. Exports to Asia dropped 23 percent in 2009 to $5.4 billion, with exports to China declining for the third consecutive year, down 21 percent to $1 billion. Exports to the 27 nations of the European Union remained weak, falling 28 percent to $4.9 billion, and accounted for 24 percent of the computer export total in 2009. On an individual country basis, Canada ($2.4 billion), Mexico ($2.3 billion), and the Netherlands ($1.3 billion) ranked as the top three markets for U.S. computer product exports (see Figure 3).

Imports
U.S. computer imports dropped nearly 6 percent to $90.1 billion in 2009, an indication that U.S. demand for computer products remains sluggish. Computer systems edged up 1 percent to $39.3 billion and computer parts imports rose close to 2 percent to $24.5 billion. On the other hand, peripheral equipment dropped 20 percent to $17.1 billion and storage devices fell 19 percent to $9.5 billion (see Figure 4).

China, the primary supplier of computer products to the U.S. market, sent $49 billion, or 55 percent of the import total in 2009, but the value declined 3 percent in 2009 when compared to 2008. China is a manufacturing hub for computer products and the world’s top exporter of high technology products. Malaysia followed as a distant second, providing $8 billion in computer products in 2009, a drop of 28 percent. On a regional basis, Asia supplied $75.2 billion, or 83 percent of the import total. Computer imports from Latin America rose sharply, 53 percent to $10.3 billion; while those from the European Union dropped 21 percent to $3 billion (see Figure 5).

Trade Balance
The U.S. trade deficit for computer products rose 1.6 percent to $70 billion in 2009 from $68.9 billion in 2008. The U.S. trade deficit with China continues to grow due to the volume of imports vs. more moderate U.S. exports to that country. During the 2005-2009 period, the deficit rose from $34.2 billion to $48.5 billion (see Figure 6). The U.S. computer trade deficit with China is larger than that of any other U.S. trading partner. The computer trade deficit with Malaysia ($7.8 billion) ranks as second and Japan ($4.6 billion) takes the third place.


(Figure 1)


(Figure 2)

(Figure 3)

(Figure 4)

(Figure 5)

(Figure 6)


Source: Official statistics of the U.S. Department of Commerce
and International Trade Commission

For additional statistical detail on:

Exports by Region (click here)
Imports by Region (click here)

Top 10 Destinations for U.S. Computer Exports (click here)
Top 10 Suppliers of Computer Imports (click here)

For additional information contact:
Joyce Watson
Office of Technology and Electronic Commerce
U.S. Department of Commerce
14th & Constitution Avenue, N.W., Room 2806
Washington, D.C. 20230
Telephone: (202) 482-0574
Fax: (202) 482-0952
E-mail: Joyce.Watson@mail.ita.doc.gov

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