Intermediate Algebra (12th Edition)

(a) China had the largest trade balance (discrepancy between imports and exports) -- imports were greater than exports by $\$28,862$million. (b) Turkey had the smallest trade balance (discrepancy between imports and exports) -- exports were greater than imports by$\$396$ million.
(a) To find the greatest trade balance, we look at the 'trade balance' column and find the largest value, ignoring whether it is positive or negative. That is, we take the absolute value of the 'trade balance' column and find the largest overall number. The largest value is "$|-\$28,862|=\$28,862$", so China had the largest trade balance (discrepancy between imports and exports) -- imports were greater than exports by $\$28,862$million (because the original value is negative). (a) To find the smallest trade balance, we look at the 'trade balance' column and find the smallest value, ignoring whether it is positive or negative. That is, we take the absolute value of the 'trade balance' column and find the smallest overall number. The smallest value is "$|\$396|=\$396$", so Turkey had the smallest trade balance (discrepancy between imports and exports) -- exports were greater than imports by$\$396$ million (because the original value is positive).