The U.S. is once again the world's favorite consumer, a sign that policymakers who identified imbalance as a trigger of the economic downturn haven't figured out how to change the situation, economists said. In the U.S., consumer savings are down and imports are running ahead of exports, while exports from China, Germany and Japan are booming. Strengthening of the U.S. dollar is undercutting President Barack Obama's campaign to double exports.

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