US trade deficit edges up to $50 billion in March

The U.S. trade deficit increased slightly in March even though the deficit with China fell to the lowest point in five years.

The Commerce Department said Thursday that the total deficit in goods and services edged up 1.5% to $50 billion in March, after falling 3.6%in February. The deficit is the difference between what America sells to the rest of the world and what it imports.

Exports rose 1% to $212 billion in March while imports rose a slightly faster 1.1% to $262 billion.

The deficit in goods with China dropped 16.2% to $20.7 billion, the lowest level since March 2014.

The United States and China have been locked in a trade war for the past year with a new round of U.S. tariffs scheduled to go into effect Friday.