The U.S. Commerce Department on Friday reported U.S. exports of goods and services in February reached $186 billion, an increase of $1.6 billion from January.
Imports of goods and services also increased slightly, by $61 million, to $228.9 billion.
As a result, the trade deficit improved, decreasing to $43 billion in February from $44.5 billion in January, exceeding market expectations, the department said. Moreover, growth in exports of U.S. goods and services outpaced the growth of imports during the first two months of 2013.
In addition, Commerce noted the latest data shows small and midsized enterprises (SMEs) continue to increase their export totals, and the number of SMEs exporting has climbed. In 2011, exports by SMEs totaled $440.1 billion, representing 33 percent of total U.S. exports. This number increased from $384.9 billion in 2010. A total of 295,594 U.S. SMEs were exporting in 2011, which is also an increase over 2010 numbers, the department said.