Economics @ ITT

Free Trade Explained In An Excellent Comic

Posted in economics, International Economics, Trade by ittecon on June 30, 2015

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) are the latest in a long line of international free trade agreements. But why are they bad for the majority of people and the planet and what are the justifications given by politicians, ecomonists and big corporations for pushing them?

via Free Trade Explained In An Excellent Comic.

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The birth of a new global currency?

Posted in economics, macroeconomics, Trade by ittecon on February 22, 2013

The internationalization of the RMB, as engineered by the Chinese government, is happening at warp speed. At the start of 2012, the RMB ranked 20th among international currencies, according to SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication). It leaped six spots in nine months.

via Business without Borders | The birth of a global currency.

US Still Giving Subsidies to Boeing

Posted in economics, International Economics, Policy Issues, Taxation, Trade by ittecon on September 26, 2012

U.S. aircraft giant Boeing is still getting U.S. subsidies despite Washington’s claim to have stopped the handouts, the European Union said on Tuesday in the latest round of the worlds biggest trade dispute.

via EU rejects U.S. claim to have weaned Boeing off subsidies | Reuters.

“From Resource Curse to Blessing” by Joseph E. Stiglitz

Posted in economics, International Economics, Taxation, Trade by ittecon on August 6, 2012

On average, resource-rich countries have done even more poorly than countries without resources. They have grown more slowly, and with greater inequality – just the opposite of what one would expect.

via “From Resource Curse to Blessing” by Joseph E. Stiglitz | Project Syndicate.

Bay Bridge may have been lost jobs opportunity

Posted in economics, employment, Policy Issues, Trade by ittecon on June 5, 2012

By now we should all be used to Made in China stickers, but the San Francisco Bay Bridge? We’ve gutted our manufacturing base, and we can’t even build a bridge—the same bridge we built 75 years ago. Is a good thing?

California officials contend the U.S. does not have the manufacturing capacity or the workforce to build such a project on its own.

via Bottom Line – SF Bay Bridge may have been lost jobs opportunity.

Oil Prices Are Determined in the World Market

Posted in economics, International Economics, macroeconomics, Policy Issues, Trade by ittecon on March 8, 2012

U.S. oil production is around 9 percent of world production. Even very large increases in U.S. production would have only a minimal effect on world oil prices, and therefore a minimal effect on the price of gas in the United States.

via Oil Prices ARE Determined in the World Market #3456: It is Not Just Something that President Obama Says | Beat the Press.

South African Workers Pay the Price for Cheap Chinese Imports

Posted in economics, employment, International Economics, macroeconomics, Trade by ittecon on May 25, 2011

[China’s] investment is proving to be a double-edged sword because South Africa’s once successful textile sector is now struggling to cope with cheap Chinese imports flooding their market.

South African workers pay the price for cheap Chinese imports – CNN.com.

The Story of Stuff

Posted in economics, environment, International Economics, macroeconomics, Policy Issues, Trade by ittecon on January 27, 2011

Our enormously productive economy demands that we make consumption our way of life, that we convert the buying and use of goods into rituals, that we seek our spiritual satisfactions, our ego satisfactions, in consumption. The measure of social status, of social acceptance, of prestige, is now to be found in our consumptive patterns. The very meaning and significance of our lives today expressed in consumptive terms. The greater the pressures upon the individual to conform to safe and accepted social standards, the more does he tend to express his aspirations and his individuality in terms of what he wears, drives, eats- his home, his car, his pattern of food serving, his hobbies.

These commodities and services must be offered to the consumer with a special urgency. We require not only “forced draft” consumption, but “expensive” consumption as well. We need things consumed, burned up, worn out, replaced, and discarded at an ever increasing pace. We need to have people eat, drink, dress, ride, live, with ever more complicated and, therefore, constantly more expensive consumption. The home power tools and the whole “do-it-yourself” movement are excellent examples of “expensive” consumption.

—Victor Lebow

Why Are People Willing to Fork Out a Fortune for Shoes That Cost Little to Make?

Posted in economics, employment, International Economics, microeconomics, Trade by ittecon on October 6, 2010

Why Are People Willing to Fork Out a Fortune for Shoes That Cost Little to Make? Interestingly enough in microeconomics, supply and demand concepts, marginal pricing, and scarcity are key to the discourse. Yet how do we account for the prices we pay for shoes, clothing, and cosmetics?

Devil’s Bargain

Posted in economics, employment, International Economics, microeconomics, Trade by ittecon on April 1, 2010

Former President Bill Clinton apologises for insisting on trade policies that destroyed Haiti’s agricultural sector.

President Bill Clinton, now the UN Special Envoy to Haiti, publicly apologized last month for forcing Haiti to drop tariffs on imported, subsidized U.S. rice during his time in office. The policy wiped out Haitian rice farming and seriously damaged Haiti’s ability to be self-sufficient. On Wednesday, journalist Kim Ives of Haiti Liberté questioned Clinton about his change of heart and his stance on the return of ousted Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Should the US rethink its position on unfettered free markets, or do countries like Haiti simply need to focus on their comparative advantages?