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NC State Economist Mike Walden – “Imports and Jobs”

Mary:  I’m Mary Walden with economist MW, welcoming you to the economic perspective.  Today’s program looks at imports and jobs.  Mike, as characteristic of the U.S. market during the last two decades has been the slower growth of jobs compared to previous years.  This includes years even before the recession.   Some point to increasing foreign imports as a factor in reducing job growth.   Do we have any evidence this is the case?

Mike:  Summary Answer

  1. We do from a new comprehensive study from the NBER
  2. China entered the WTO in 2000 – trade increased dramatically after that
  3. Clearly impacted some domestic producers, such as textiles in NC
  4. Authors estimate that between 2 million and 2.4 million net jobs were lost nationwide between 1999 and 2011
  5. Net jobs because some jobs were created – if consumers could purchases lower priced imports, then freed up money for them to spend elsewhere
  6. Still, net job impact was a loss, and profoundly affected the job market
  7. I’m MW


Mary:  And I’m Mary Walden for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service'

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.