You are here

May 2009 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Fell 35.4 Percent from May 2008

May 2009 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Fell 35.4 Percent from May 2008

(State Rankings in Tables 5 and 7)

PDF

BTS 37-09
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Thursday, July 30, 2009 - Trade using surface transportation between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico was 35.4 percent lower in May 2009 than in May 2008, the biggest decline from the same month of the previous year on record, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (Table 1).

BTS, a part of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that the value of North American surface trade dropped to $47.9 billion in the fifth consecutive month with a year-to-year decline of greater than 27 percent. Imports from Canada and Mexico to the U.S. in May were down 38.1 percent from May 2008 while exports from the U.S. declined 32.0 percent (Table 2).

Surface transportation consists largely of freight movements by truck, rail and pipeline. About 88 percent of U.S. trade by value with Canada and Mexico moves on land.

The value of U.S. surface transportation trade with Canada and Mexico fell 3.7 percent in May 2009 from April 2009 (Table 2). 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 May 2009 was down 9.9 percent compared to May 2004, and up 16.1 percent compared to May 1999, a period of 10 years (Table 3). Imports in May were up 12.0 percent compared to May 1999, while exports were up 21.2 percent.

U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Canada

U.S.Canada surface transportation trade totaled $29.2 billion in May 2009, down 40.3 percent compared to May 2008 (Table 4). The value of imports carried by truck was 35.7 percent lower in May 2009 compared to May 2008, while the value of exports carried by truck was 33.4 percent lower during this period.

Michigan led all states in surface trade with Canada in May 2009 with $2.8 billion (Table 5).

U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Mexico

U.S.Mexico surface transportation trade totaled $18.6 billion in May 2009, down 26.0 percent compared to May 2008 (Table 6). The value of imports carried by truck was 23.4 percent lower in May 2009 than May 2008 while the value of exports carried by truck was 21.1 percent lower.

Texas led all states in surface trade with Mexico in May 2009 with $6.2 billion (Table 7).

The TransBorder Freight Data are a unique 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. May 2009 TransBorder numbers include data received by BTS as of July 10.

The news release and summary tables can be found at www.bts.gov. More information on TransBorder Freight Data and data from previous months are posted on the BTS website at http://www.bts.gov/transborder/. BTS will release June TransBorder numbers on Aug. 31.

Table 1. Value of Monthly U.S. Surface Transportation Trade with Canada and Mexico

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Month 2007 2008 2009 Percent Change 2007-2008 Percent Change 2008-2009
January 60,649 65,160 47,459 7.4 -27.2
February 59,667 69,406 47,938 16.3 -30.9
March 69,768 70,787 51,055 1.5 -27.9
April 65,015 74,317 49,729 14.3 -33.1
May 69,423 74,128 47,881 6.8 -35.4
June 69,526 74,139   6.6  
July 61,823 71,628   15.9  
August 69,158 72,254   4.5  
September 66,771 71,801   7.5  
October 74,249 72,683   -2.1  
November 70,352 60,661   -13.8  
December 60,902 52,910   -13.1  
Year-to-date 324,521 353,798 244,063 9.0 -31.0
Annual 797,303 829,875   4.1  

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 2. U.S. Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico by Mode of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Mode   May 2008 April 2009 May 2009 Percent Change April 2009 - May 2009 Percent Change May 2008-2009
All Surface Modes Imports 41,374 26,710 25,595 -4.2 -38.1
Exports 32,754 23,019 22,286 -3.2 -32.0
Total 74,128 49,729 47,881 -3.7 -35.4
Truck Imports 24,498 17,993 17,233 -4.2 -29.7
Exports 24,701 17,935 17,447 -2.7 -29.4
Rail Imports 8,253 4,549 4,448 -2.2 -46.1
Exports 4,432 2,816 2,750 -2.4 -38.0
Pipeline Imports 7,110 3,082 2,904 -5.8 -59.2
Exports 634 256 304 18.7 -52.1

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Notes: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the "Data Fields" Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html.

Table 3. May 2009 Surface Trade with Canada and Mexico Compared with June of Prior Years

Excel | CSV

Compared to May in… Percent Change
Imports Exports Total Surface Trade
2008 -38.1 -32.0 -35.4
2007 -34.2 -26.9 -31.0
2006 -31.3 -22.4 -27.4
2005 -21.3 -12.1 -17.3
2004 -15.3 -2.9 -9.9
2003 -7.7 5.7 -1.9
2002 -7.2 6.3 -1.3
2001 -9.9 5.0 -3.5
2000 -6.7 3.1 -2.4
1999 12.0 21.2 16.1

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Table 4. U.S. Merchandise Trade with Canada by Surface Modes of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Mode   May 2008 April 2009 May 2009 Percent Change April 2009 - May 2009 Percent Change May 2008-2009
All Surface Modes Imports 26,728 15,563 14,799 -4.9 -44.6
Exports 22,211 14,654 14,435 -1.5 -35.0
Total 48,939 30,217 29,234 -3.3 -40.3
Truck Imports 12,471 8,637 8,022 -7.1 -35.7
Exports 16,649 11,133 11,091 -0.4 -33.4
Rail Imports 5,947 3,017 3,098 2.7 -47.9
Exports 2,576 1,646 1,661 0.9 -35.5
Pipeline Imports 7,096 3,073 2,892 -5.9 -59.2
Exports 489 212 259 21.9 -47.1

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the "Data Fields" Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html.

Table 5. Top 10 States Trading with Canada by Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by May 2009 Surface Trade Value

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Rank State May 2009
1 Michigan 2,769
2 Illinois 2,427
3 California 2,142
4 New York 1,872
5 Ohio 1,701
6 Texas 1,609
7 Pennsylvania 1,189
8 Washington 1,052
9 Tennessee 859
10 Indiana 837

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Table 6. U.S. Surface Trade with Mexico by Mode of Transportation

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Mode   May 2008 April 2009 May 2009 Percent Change April 2009 - May 2009 Percent Change May 2008-2009
All Surface Modes Imports 14,646 11,147 10,796 -3.1 -26.3
Exports 10,542 8,365 7,851 -6.2 -25.5
Total 25,189 19,512 18,647 -4.4 -26.0
Truck Imports 12,026 9,356 9,211 -1.6 -23.4
Exports 8,051 6,803 6,356 -6.6 -21.1
Rail Imports 2,306 1,532 1,350 -11.9 -41.4
Exports 1,856 1,170 1,089 -7.0 -41.3
Pipeline Imports 15 9 12 23.8 -19.4
Exports 146 44 45 2.9 -69.0

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/

Note: Numbers may not add to totals due to rounding. Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding. The value of trade for all surface modes is not equal to the sum of truck, rail and pipeline modes, it also includes shipments made by mail, foreign trade zones, other and unknown modes of transportation.  For additional detail refer to the "Data Fields" Section of the TransBorder web page: http://www.bts.gov/transborder/TBDR_DataFields.html

Table 7. Top 10 States Trading with Mexico by Surface Modes of Transportation

Ranked by May 2009 Surface Trade Value

(millions of dollars)

Excel | CSV

Rank State May 2009
1 Texas 6,194
2 California 3,365
3 Michigan 1,454
4 Arizona 754
5 Illinois 682
6 Ohio 490
7 Tennessee 400
8 North Carolina 317
9 New Jersey 308
10 Pennsylvania 307

Source: BTS TransBorder Freight Data, http://www.bts.gov/transborder/