Tariffs and Trade

On September 12, 2018, I presented my thoughts on tariffs and trade to the Golden K Kiwanis Club of Appleton.  The following link provides the slides for my presentation:  Tariffs and Trade  

Trade Deficits: A Poor Focus for Public Policy

On June 3, 2018, the Appleton Post-Crescent published the below guest column.  The hard-copy edition does not contain either the graphics or hyperlinks provided here. President Trump views trade deficits in goods (imports greater than exports) as bad for the US and claims policy should be directed at reducing the total of $811 billion excess … More Trade Deficits: A Poor Focus for Public Policy

Make America Mercantilist Again: 6 False Premises That Underpin New US Tariff Policy

In this blog posting, I make the argument that using tariffs to reduce trade deficits and increase domestic economic well-being will be counterproductive. Furthermore, the claims made by the President (and his Commerce Secretary) to support tariffs related to steel and aluminum imports are based on false premises. In a previous posting, I defined mercantilism … More Make America Mercantilist Again: 6 False Premises That Underpin New US Tariff Policy

Are U.S. Exchange Rates Too High, Too Low, or Just Right?

Currency exchanges rates between any two countries are determined by a variety of factors including their balance of trade and payments, capital flows (both restricted and unrestricted), and monetary policies.  In a recent posting on Conversable Economics, Timothy Taylor argued that “all exchange rates are bad” (meaning that they generate some negative consequences.)  Although this … More Are U.S. Exchange Rates Too High, Too Low, or Just Right?

Myths About International Trade

This blog posting seeks to provide some starting points for discussion about the benefits and costs of international trade.  In this particular posting, I address aggregate national considerations and do not address either exchange rate effects or distributional effects within the U.S. or any other country. Those will be topics for future postings. In order to make … More Myths About International Trade