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Press Release: Every $1b increase in imports 4,552 lost jobs

January 12, 2017

Washington~ The Coalition for a Prosperous America’s research center has found, in an economic analysis of federal government data, that every $1 billion increase in imports causes a loss of 4,552 US jobs. Globalization advocates often claim job gains from exports, but fail to include the import displacement side of the equation.

“We wanted to calculate a specific number to show what could be the impact of an effort to close the trade deficit,” said Jeff Ferry, CPA’s Research Director. “Our analysis shows that if we could close the $500 billion trade deficit tomorrow, it would create as much as 2.3 million new jobs and most of those would be well-paying manufacturing jobs." 

Our economic analysis goes on to state:

As an illustration, from the beginning of the current economic recovery in 2009 to last year, goods imports increased by 44% or $693 billion, to total $2.27 trillion in 2015. That increase in imports translates to a loss of 3.15 million jobs, a large impact given that U.S. unemployment in November 2016 totaled 7.4 million people or 5% on the narrow (U-3) measure of unemployment. 

"The federal government should make balanced trade a national priority,” said Michael Stumo, CEO of CPA. “Too often we see fake trade news presenting only 'export supported jobs' without including job losses from import displacement. Solid, strategic decisions for America can only be made by considering net trade and net job creation.” 

The US can eliminate the trade deficit over time through aggressive action on currency misalignment, effective enforcement against foreign subsidies and unfair trade practices and tax reform that incentivizes domestic production. Tariffs should not be ignored as a means to discipline trade unfairness that cannot otherwise be solved.

“We can’t make these changes overnight but we can set a goal now and focus upon achieving it,” said Ferry.

The Coalition for a Prosperous America is a nonprofit organization representing the interests of 2.7 million households through our agricultural, manufacturing and labor members.

Contact: Paola Masman, Media Director 
202-688-5145 ext 2, paola@prosperousamerica.org


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