Good news, and... good news: "The following is from the 14 July 2011 edition of the âAmerican Shipperâ. U.S. import shipment volume for June decreased 7.4 percent from the same month in 2010, trade intelligence firm Zepol Corp. said Wednesday. The analyst said the volume, measured in TEUs, also decreased 4.6 percent from the previous month. The total number of U.S.-bound shipments decreased more than 6 percent from June 2010. Year to date, U.S. import volume is up 4.8 percent. Zepol said the overall June decrease was largely due to a nearly 6 percent decrease in incoming shipments from Asia. China played a large part in this, with a 5.8 percent decrease. Japan, however, showed a 2.5 percent increase in incoming shipments. Similar to Asia, shipments from Central America and South America were down 4.9 percent and 7.6 percent decrease, respectively. California ports ended a two-month streak of rising imports and posted an 8 percent decrease compared June 2010." And exports are up. "Doubling Up on Exports [U.S] The following is from the 14 July 2011 edition of the Journal of Commerce. Keep those fingers crossed, but the U.S. is on track to accomplish an important job-creating goal from President Obama â doubling the nationâs exports in five years. When he set that goal, Obama appeared to some to be over-reaching. Everybody knew that Americans are voracious consumers of imports. Our national business model is to ship more and more manufacturing jobs overseas, and then pay to ship the merchandise they produce back in. That model is not disappearing; imports still vastly outweigh exports and will continue to long after the National Export Initiative declares victory and closes shop. The U.S. trade deficit may keep expanding as a result, which makes us more vulnerable to trade and currency and debt pressures from partners or rivals overseas. Still, take a moment to pat U.S. exporters on the back, plus the Export-Import Bank credits and Department of Transportation infrastructure grants that help smooth the way by providing low-cost financing or upgrading freight delivery lanes. After the May trade report came out on July 12, the Ex-Im Bank summed up the gains. âOver the last 12 months, exports have been growing at an annualized rate of 16.6 percent when compared to 2009, a pace greater than the 15 percent required to double exports by the end of 2014, which is the goal of President Obama's National Export Initiative.â For May alone, the $174.9 billion in exports of goods and services was 15 percent above the same month in 2010. Right on the cusp, but still on track toward the goal."