Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tuesday Quick Hits

I'm travelling this week, so blogging will remain light, but here are a few things to keep you going:
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) takes to the op-ed pages today to explain what many of us have been saying for a month now: President Obama's "blame Congress" strategy for the continuing stagnation of US FTAs with Colombia, Panama and Korea is extremely disingenuous.
  • Mitt Romney released his economic plan today, including a detailed section on trade policy (starting at p. 41).  I'll have a lot more on this later, but for now let's just say that, on US-China trade, Governor Romney regrettably appears to have taken a page right out of Donald Trump's China playbook.  (Jon Huntsman's recently-released plan was far less antagonistic.)
  • The WSJ today explains how Korea is facing a serious inflation problem because its trying to competitively devalue its currency as in the face of continued easy money policy in the United States.  If this all sounds familiar, it should: China's having the same problem for much the same reason.  Crazy how basic economics works, eh?
  • Speaking of China, the WSJ reports that its "low wage export engine" is starting to "sputter" due to labor cost inflation and competition from other low-cost countries like Vietnam.  Shocking, I know.
  • The WSJ rightly explains that Asia's impressive increase in high net-worth individuals is a good sign for those economies (and the global economy more broadly), but it's troubling that some of that increase is due to cronyism and government patronage rather than merit.
That's it for tonight, folks.

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