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balance of trade

the difference between the values of exports and imports of a country, said to be favorable or unfavorable as exports are greater or less than imports.
Origin of balance of trade
1660-70 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for balance of trade
  • We are racking up record monthly balance of trade deficits.
  • With other nations the balance of trade is either against us, or not much in our favour.
  • Both our balance of trade and our ability to invest abroad would be strengthened.
  • US has been buying supplies for military and foreign aid abroad to help countries with unfavorable balance of trade.
  • The crowd, eager for something more lyrical than the balance of trade, agreed.
  • The cost is part of the balance of trade problem and the cost in manpower is unjustified.
  • But mathematically all nations cannot have a positive balance of trade.
  • The streets have been filled with imported goods, such that the balance of trade has deteriorated.
  • The benefits of global trade are writ quite plainly in the balance of trade--better yet in the balance of trade ex raw materials.
  • They have a negligible effect on import, export and balance of trade statistics.
British Dictionary definitions for balance of trade

balance of trade

(economics) the difference in value between total exports and total imports of goods Also called visible balance Compare invisible balance
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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balance of trade in Culture

balance of trade definition

That part of the balance of payments relating to goods only (as opposed to services, monetary movements, official reserve transactions, etc.).

Note: A nation whose imports are worth more than its exports is said to have an unfavorable balance of trade, or to be running a trade deficit.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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