SUMMARY OF U.S. EXPORT AND
IMPORT MERCHANDISE TRADE
This Supplement contains monthly data on U.S. general imports of crude petro-
leum and selected petroleum products into the U.S. Customs area and into the
Virgin Islands for the period January 1974 through May 1975. (It should
be noted that imports into the Virgin Islands are excluded from the official
U.S. import totals presented in Report FT 900.) The data in these tables are
not adjusted for seasonal and working-day variation.
Beginning with the issue for January 1975, the value figures presented for
1974 and 1975 are in terms of the f.a.s. (free alongside ship) import value.
In prior issues, the value figures are in terms of the Customs import value.
(A definition of the f.a.s. import value is included in the "Explanation of
Statistics" on page 2.)
Inquiries concerning these figures should be addressed to the Chief. Foreign Trade Division, Bureau of the
Census, Washington. D.C. 20233. Tel: Area Code 301, 763-5140.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE. Social and Economic Statistics Administration, BUREAU OF THE CENSUS
For sale by the Subscribers Services Section (Publications), Social and Economic Statistics Administration,
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subscription (FT 900,975,985, and 986 combined) $3.00.
EXPLANATION OF STATISTICS
Import Monthly Carryover
The U.S. import statistics reflect both government and
nongovernment imports of merchandise from foreign coun-
tries into thile U.S Customs territory, which includes the 50
States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Ship-
ments between the United States and Puerto Rico, between
the United Slates and the Virgin Islands, Guam, American
Samoa., and other U.S. possessions, between any of these
outlying areas, and imports into U.S. possessions from
foreign countries are not included in the U.S. import
statistics. However, separate data on imports of petroleum
and petroleum products into the Virgin Islands from foreign
countries are presented in this report. (Statistics on U.S.
trade with Puerto Rico and with U.S. possessions are
published separately in Report FT 800. Additional data on
such trade and on imports into the Virgin Islands from
foreign countries are contained in reference tabulations.)
General Imports/Imports for Consumption
The statisli.s on U.S. imports are presented in terms of
both "General Imports" and "Imports for Consumption "
General imports are a combination of entries for immediate
consumption and entries into Customs bonded warehouses,
and thus generally reflect total arrivals of merchandise.
Imports for consumption are a combination of entries for
immediate consumption and withdrawals from warehouses
for consumption, and thus generally reflect the total of the
commodities entered into U.S. consumption channels.
Source of Import Information
The official U.S statistics on imports are compiled by the
Bureau of tile Census from copies of the import entry and
warehouse withdrawal forms which importers are required
b\ law to file with Customs officials. The information as to
country of origin. net quantity. value and commodity
classification is verified by Customs officials on entries filed
for transactions valued o'er S250, which are ordinarily
subject to exdiiaination for Customs appraisement purposes.
The slalisllic for each month are generally released about 3
to 4 weeks after the end ol the given month.
The I as I free alongside ship) value shown in tables IA
and IB of this report represents the transaction value of
imports .at tile foreign port of exportation. It is based on the
plirch.wc piwcc. I e.. the actual transaction value and
general> ii iludes all charges incurred in placing the
merchandise alongside the carrier at the port of exportation
in the country of esportalion The value information shown
in tables 2A and 2B for imports into thie Virgin Islands from
foreign countries represents thie dutiable value of the
merchandise in the Virgin Islands.
It is the objective of the compiling procedures to include
shipments, insofar as practicable, in the statistics for the
actual month of importation. However, for purposes of the
statistics the month of importation is based on the date of
the import entry or warehouse withdrawal document. This
may not in all cases correspond to the actual month of
importation. (For example, under the Customs "immedi-
ate-delivery" procedures, importers may file the import
entry up to 10 workdays after the actual date of importa-
tion.) Also, because of processing problems (e.g., late
receipt of a document for an end-of-month shipment,
rejection of a shipment by the computer because the data
fail to meet certain edit criteria established to protect the
accuracy of the statistics, etc.), there is an overall average
carryover of U.S. imports of about seven percent (in terms
of value) of the shipments from the reported month of
importation (based on the date of the import entry or
warehouse withdrawal) to a subsequent month, usually the
succeeding month. For Virgin Islands imports, the carryover
is about four percent. In addition, as a result of the
aforementioned Customs "immediate-delivery" procedures,
there is a further carryover of presently unknown magni-
tude from the actual month of importation to a subsequent
month. These limitations should be borne in mind when
making month-to-month comparisons.
Cumulations of data over at least 4-month periods are
desirable to identify underlying trends. Month-to-month
changes in imports, exports, and similar series often reflect
primarily irregular movements, differences in monthly
carr over, etc.
Reliability of the Data
This report presents fully compiled data for import
shipments of petroleum and petroleum products valued
$251 and over. Data on any shipments valued under
$251 are not included in this report. Information on
under-S251 shipments is not compiled by commodity,
but estimates based on a I-percent sample are included
in the overall import total.
Although the statistics in this report are fully com-
piled, the figures are subject to the possibility of errors
which may arise from various sources. Among these are
errors in the reporting and/or processing of information
as to commodity classification, net quantity, value, and
month of inclusion (see Import Monthly Carryover,
above). However, the possibility of error is considerably
reduced due to the verification by Customs officials of
statistical information reported on entries filed for trans-
actions valued over $250. In addition, the procedures
used to compile the statistics include clerical and com-
puter processing checks designed to protect the accuracy
of the statistics to the fullest practicable extent.
Revisions To The Statistics
Revisions are carried into the statistics on a periodic
basis. Data for 1974 and 1975 appearing in the 1975
monthly issues of this report are presented as follows:
a. January through November 1975 issues: figures are as
originally issued, except as noted below.
b. December 1975 issue: figures reflect revisions for
prior months of the year issued with December 1975
statistics or earlier, as noted below.
a. January through May 1975 issues. figures reflect
revisions issued with December 1974 statistics or
b. June through December 1975 issues: figures reflect
revisions to 1974 data issued wilh June 1975 statistics
In addition to the revisions which are made on a periodic
basis, instances may occur where a significant error in the
statistics for a month of the current 5ear is discovered after
the statistics for that month are compiled If the error is of
sufficient importance to require correction prior to the time
that the regular revisions are carried, the correction is made
and so noted in this or other reports-
Additional information regarding the foreign trade sta-
tistics may be obtained from the Foreign Trade Dilision.
Bureau of the Census. Washington, D C. 20233.
Schedule A and TSUSA Commodity Numbers Used in Compiling the Information
Presented in This Report
Schedule A. No.
Schedule A. No.
Crude and partly refined
Distillate fuel oil
Residual fuel oil
Propane and butane gas
Liquid derivatives of
Paraffin and other min-
Napthas not for further
All other petroleum pro-
ducts (pitch of tar
coke, nonliquid hydro-
carbon mixtures, and
calcined petroleum and
coal coke not for fuel)
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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Social and Economic Statistics Administration
BUREAU OF THE CENSUS
Washington, D C 20233
FIRST CLASS MAIL
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