America’s trade gap widens

■ The US trade deficit widened marginally in July, as exports and imports both shrank in the gloomy worldwide economic climate, federal government departments revealed yesterday. The deficit inched wider to $42bn (£26bn), up from $41.9bn in June, the US Census Bureau and US Bureau of Economic Analysis said in a joint data release. This net movement was driven by a $1.9bn drop-off in exports, which could not be fully compensated by the $1.8bn slip in imports. The goods deficit narrowed $0.2bn compared to June, but the surplus in services also narrowed, by some $0.3bn.