Year-to-year NAFTA trade up 15.6% in March; monthly trade up 21.5%

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Nafta Trade Chart

Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement partners Canada and Mexico was 15.6 percent higher in March 2011 than in March 2010, reaching $80.8 billion, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

March 2011 was the highest month since collection of data began in 1994, beating the previous record set in April 2008 by 8.8 percent, not adjusted for inflation. BTS, a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in March 2011 rose 58.3 percent in two years from March 2009. Trade value in March 2011 was up 14.2 percent from the early recession level of March 2008.

Freight value in March rose 21.5 percent from February 2011; month-to-month changes can be affected by seasonal variations and other factors. The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico in March was up 18.5 percent compared to March 2006, and up 60.9 percent compared to March 2001. Imports in March were up 52.2 percent compared to March 2001, while exports were up 72.3 percent.

U.S.-Canada surface transportation trade totaled $48.7 billion in March, up 15.7 percent compared to March 2010; Michigan led all states in surface trade with Canada in March with $6.1 billion. U.S.-Mexico surface transportation trade exceeded $30 billion for the first time, totaling $32.1 billion in March, up 15.3 percent compared to March 2010; Texas led all states in surface trade with Mexico in March with $11.3 billion, the highest amount of trade on record between a U.S. state and Mexico.

The TransBorder Freight Data are a subset of official U.S. foreign trade statistics released by the U.S. Census Bureau. New data are tabulated monthly, and historical data are not adjusted for inflation. Surface transportation includes freight movements by truck, rail, pipeline, mail, Foreign Trade Zones and other modes. In March, 85.8 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moved on land, 9.8 percent moved by vessel, and 4.4 percent moved by air.