China's trade surplus came in at US$24.97 billion in August, up 33% compared to a year earlier and just below the June record of US$26.91 billion, according to data released by the General Administration of Customs on Tuesday. Exports grew 22.7% to US$111.36 billion, down from the 34.2% increase posted in July. Imports also rose at a slower rate, gaining 20.1% to reach US$86.38 billion as opposed to the 26.9% seen in July. However, Chinese exports to the US slowed to 16.7% in the first eight months of 2007 compared to 18% in the first seven months. This could be an indication that the summer's subprime lending crisis is having an effect on US demand for goods, the Wall Street Journal reported. It is thought that a US economic slowdown would weaken the dollar against other currencies, thereby placing China under even more pressure to allow faster renminbi appreciation.