January 15, 1988

I have a brief statement here to read. And I want to warn you now; I cannot take any questions, because already we're pressing our appointment at the hospital, there, for the checkup. So, I will have to go. And besides, you all ought to get in out of the cold.

Well, we've had some more good news on the economic front today. As I've been saying all along, the fundamentals in the United States economy remain sound. Industrial production is up, inflation is down, and this country continues on a long trend of sustained growth with low inflation. The trade deficit for November fell 25 percent from the October level, and exports increased to an all-time record.

Much of the improvement came from our manufacturing sector, again indicating that our competitive position in the world is steadily improving. This news has had a positive impact in the financial markets around the world, but we should not pay undue attention to any one month's trade numbers. The real significance is that over the past 61 months a trend for the American economy has been sustained growth with low inflation, and today's signs indicate that it will continue well into the future.

And thank you all, and we're on our way.

Note: The President spoke at 1 p.m. at the South Portico of the White House prior to his departure for Bethesda Naval Hospital for a physical examination.