Cheer up! I have some economic bad news

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Ricter, May 11, 2011.

  1. Ricter


    Well, kinda. At least I'm trying.

    "Economist: U.S. Can't Handle a Major Increase in Exports
    (DC Velocity – Toby Gooley)

    The current state of U.S. infrastructure is not adequate to support President Obama's push to double export volumes over the next five years, according to a leading industry economist.

    Speaking May 5 at the Virginia Maritime Association's annual International Trade Symposium, Walter Kemmsies, chief economist for Moffatt & Nichol, an engineering firm specializing in transport and infrastructure issues, said the country lacks the "infrastructure to support increased exports" and that without significant changes to the transport system, the United States "will choke on our economic growth."

    One problem, according to Kemmsies, is that an infrastructure built around moving containerized import traffic from the West Coast to inland population centers may no longer fit shifting trade and transportation patterns. Inbound containers currently travel to urban areas with large consumer markets. However, most export traffic originates in rural areas where containers are not readily available, Kemmsies said. The often-prohibitive costs of repositioning empty containers or bringing exports to the existing infrastructure have forced some U.S. exporters to shift from containers to bulk shipping methods, said Kemmsies.

    "We need more infrastructure to support containerized exports... including building more [bulk-to-container] transfer facilities at ports and more intermodal systems in agricultural areas," Kemmsies said.

    Kemmsies told the group that ocean carriers' use of slow steaming to minimize fuel usage is a major reason for West Coast ports' recent gains in market share. It has become faster to drop containers on the West Coast and ship them by intermodal rail to the East Coast than to slow steam to the East Coast, he said. As transportation costs continue to rise, companies with time constraints are finding it more advantageous to ship through the West Coast again, he said."
  2. Bring in the Mexicans.....:D

    The Chinese could also help out if we ask them politely. :D
  3. Ricter


    Bring back the WPA. I could get behind some welfare cutting if there would be jobs for the former recipients to take.
  4. Ricter


    Woohoo, more bad news!

    "Oil Prices Help Widen U.S. Trade Deficit
    (Journal of Commerce Online – Joseph Bonney)

    Deficit at highest number since June

    The U.S. trade deficit rose 6% in March as higher oil prices offset rising exports fueled by demand for overseas autos, chemicals and machinery.

    The $48.2 billion deficit was the largest since June, the Commerce Department said. Oil prices, which averaged $93.76 in March, was the biggest contributor. Excluding petroleum, the trade deficit decreased to $16.9 billion in March from $20 billion in February.

    The weaker dollar helped exports increase 4.6%, the largest month-to-month gain since March 1994, but boosted prices for imported goods and commodities such as oil. The dollar’s value against a weighted basket of currencies dropped 9.4% from June 2010 to March 31.

    U.S. exports to China rose 13% while imports increased 1.2%. The U.S. trade deficit with China shrank $18.1 billion, down from $18.1 million in February."
  5. achilles28


    There is no way in hell America can "export its way" out of this recession.

    Third-world countries now dominate the manufacture of BOTH low technology and high technology products.

    The sophisticated gadgets America was supposed to make and export to third-world Countries, they make themselves.

    Not only that, but those 3rd world countries now export those same high-tech gadgets to us.

    So in effect, our labor market for exports was destroyed. And our labor market for domestic demand was destroyed, too.

    That's why a good clip of those 11 million jobs lost aren't coming back.

    This is why it's been called a "jobless recovery" with "structural unemployment". End the deficit and U99'ers and watch what happens to this "jobless recovery"...

    We're a joke. Apple, Dell, Ford, GM, Texas Instruments, Walmart. All make shit overseas so they can import it back to America.

    David Ricardo's theory of comparative advantage is horseshit. Without technology controls, it's worthless.

    But this is all by design. Our leaders are not stupid (unlike most Americans).

    Here's some nice reading:
  6. I think all they need to do is provide less of a tax break for manufacturing conducted overseas. Like if you hire people in the U.S. to manufacture widgets, then the cost of the factory and the wages are full write-offs. But if you do it overseas, you can only take a write-off equivalent to half of what you spent.

    More workers in America means more taxes paid. More demand for workers in America means higher wages and therefore higher taxes paid.

    Now write your congressman.

  7. 377OHMS


    Hmm me too. Put them to work planting trees etc like the WPA and then I don't mind if they are receiving public money.
  8. achilles28


    Nice sentiment but I doubt it's that easy. We need big tariffs - in the order of 100% - 200% - against cheap-labor centers. Then smash the Unions. That's the only way we return to prosperity. And it probably won't happen. America is in decline for a reason. Everything else is just empty rhetoric to coddle the plebs.
  9. Out side the auto industry the role of the unions in company profitability has been somewhat overplayed, there are heaps of low wage high union membership companies still left in the US and I still feel its the rather generous tax regime for companies that have outsourced and the willingness of companies to relocate to low cost centers. If its any comfort to some you I am personally aware of company that relocated its manufacturing facility from NY to Mexico and is now up for sale as the quality of manufacture that once held it as a market leader has declined so far that its products are now to be found in discount outlets only. A badly managed but profitable company that thought it could grow the bottom line by outsourcing a situation probably more common than we think.