The trade deficit in March widened by 2.5% to $40.4 billion, according to today's report by the Commerce Department. This was a larger increase than expected and was attributed in part to increasing oil prices. During the recession, the U.S. was able to narrow its trade deficit. From July 2008 through May 2009, the monthly deficit shrank from $64.9 billion to $25.7 billion -- a level not seen since 1999.

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