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Current Trade Deficit:    
Trade News Archive: 19 January - 25 January
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As well as providing fresh news reports every day, AmericanEconomicAlert.org offers a uniques news rating system. Each news item below has been given a rating from 1 to 5 stars, depending on its importance and relevance to U.S. international economic and trade policy.
 

Friday, January 23, 2015
Cree outsourcing move means 319 jobs cut in Durham
Triangle Business Journal

• Comment: "An "unforeseeable circumstance" with a client has a Durham-based recruiting firm laying off 319 employees on its behalf. The client is Durham-based LED giant Cree (Nasdaq: CREE)."

Thursday, January 22, 2015
Exclusive: Senator preparing new push against currency cheats in trade
Reuters

• Comment: "U.S. lawmakers are preparing a new push to stop trading partners unfairly manipulating their currencies to gain an export advantage, a senior Democrat said on Thursday."
US Duties Proposed on Solar Products Upset China
Industry Week

• Comment: "The statement from China's Commerce Ministry came one day after the U.S. International Trade Commission paved the way for duty orders on imports of certain crystalline silicon photovoltaic products, saying that they were being dumped and unfairly subsidized."
Imbalances in the Global Trading System Say India and Brazil? Let’s Start with Manufacturing Tariffs
Shopfloor

• Comment: "As this chart shows, bound tariffs – the highest amount a country can impose in normal import tariffs – are nearly 10 times lower for the United States than either India or Brazil. Even applied tariffs – the amount a country is currently taxing at the border – are lower in the United States."
WH will 'work hard' for Dem votes on trade bills
The Hill

• Comment: "Many congressional Democrats have voiced opposition to the legislation, which would limit Congress to a simple yes-or-no vote on a final deal. That would give Obama greater leverage in the negotiations, where partner countries have expressed concern that Congress could try to alter a deal after terms have been settled. Those Democrats say the free trade pacts would hurt American workers by drawing them into competition with low-wage foreign workers, and labor union leaders have lobbied aggressively against the bill."
Obama asks for fast track authority — Dems plan SOTU trade rebuttal — Ryan schedules first trade hearing
Politico

• Comment: "President Barack Obama on Tuesday night urged both Democrats and Republican to give him “trade promotion authority” to bring home new trade deals in the Asia-Pacific and Europe while acknowledging some past agreements haven’t “always lived up to the hype.”
U.S. senator says wants to introduce fast-track trade bill by end January
Reuters

• Comment: "We want to do it before the end of this month if we can get everything put together," he told reporters. He said the aim was to move the bill out of the committee stage by the end of February, which could suggest a vote in March."

Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Sales Up, Worries Down for Confident US Manufacturers
Industry Week

• Comment: "Manufacturers said they plan to boost hiring, with 60% indicating they would add employees over the next 12 months. The biggest job openings identified were in skilled labor (75%) and middle management (41%).Executives also acknowledged the continuing skills gap in manufacturing, with two-thirds reporting they had open positions over the past year that they were unable to fill with experienced or skilled employees."
How Much Will Manufacturing Benefit from US Economic Expansion?
Industry Week

• Comment: "While the country gained 252,000 jobs in December, only 17,000 were manufacturing jobs according to the monthly report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which added ─ "…Manufacturing added an average of 16,000 jobs per month in 2014, compared with an average gain of 7,000 jobs per month in 2013."
Manufacturing Gets Short Shrift in the State of the Union, Republican Response
Industry Week

• Comment: "The two sides also appeared to agree on international free trade. Although Obama did note past agreements didn't always work out as they were envisioned."
What the Heck Is Happening to US Manufacturing?
Zero Hedge

• Comment: "The Manufacturing PMI for December fell to 53.9, down for the fourth month in a row, from the peak in August. Production volumes rose at the weakest pace in 11 months. Same song: Still a “solid expansion,” but at a slower pace. Turns out, “uncertainty towards the global economic outlook had contributed to slower production growth and softer new business gains during recent months.”
U.S. Steel to idle coke-making units, tin mill in Illinois
Pittsburgh Business Times

• Comment: "The company provided notice Jan. 19 to union officials at its Granite City Works that it plans to permanently close the two coke-making units on or after March 22, according to U.S. Steel spokeswoman Courtney Boone. About 176 employees will be impacted, she said."
Obama says U.S., not China, must write trade rules
Reuters

• Comment: "The majority of Democrats right now are very hesitant, to say the least, and not at all sure that trade is good for working people,” said Hoyer, who voted against fast-track in 2002 but has supported major trade deals."
Commerce Department Levies Anti-dumping Duties on Tires Made in China
Industry Week

• Comment: "The United States on Wednesday set large preliminary import duties on car and light-truck tires made in China, saying producers were dumping them into the U.S. market.The U.S. Commerce Department said it would begin collecting anti-dumping duties of between 19.17% and 87.99% on the tires, depending on the producer/exporter."
SolarWorld wins final round in dumping case against China, Taiwan
Portland Business Journal

• Comment: "The commission voted 5-0 that Chinese solar manufacturers violated trade rules. The vote was 4-1 against Taiwan manufacturers. The case accused Chinese manufacturers of evading earlier duties by incorporating cells manufactured in Taiwan into their solar panels."
Obama's top Asia adviser: goal is for complete trade pact in 2015
Reuters

• Comment: "Disagreement between the United States and Japan, the pact's two biggest economies, over how widely Japan will open its doors to farm exports, has hindered progress on the agreement."
Democrats vow to stall Obama's push for 'fast-track' trade deals
Reuters

• Comment: "The Trans-Pacific Partnership will only accelerate this problem and make it worse. It will make it even easier for corporations to send American manufacturing jobs overseas," said Representative Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, who predicted there were enough votes to block the authority."
New Democrats in U.S. Congress join trade opponents
Reuters

• Comment: "Nine of the 16 new Democrats in the House of Representatives wrote to President Barack Obama on Wednesday to express "serious concerns" about fast-track, which limits Congress to a yes-or-no vote on trade agreements in exchange for setting negotiating objectives."
U.S. trade official says 'fast-track' is not a rush process
Reuters

• Comment: "The United States' top trade official on Wednesday said the nation needs fast-track authority so that its trading partners have confidence when they make a concession, adding that the power is not designed to rush agreements through Congress."
Michael Froman, liberal Democrats clash on trade authority
Politico

• Comment: "The TPA bill, also known as fast-track legislation, would allow the White House to put trade deals before Congress for simple up-or-down votes without amendments. The bill is considered key to wrapping up the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership pact with Japan and 10 other countries and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with the 28-nation European Union because it provides negotiating countries with the assurance that Congress won’t undo the provisions of the deals."

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Monday, January 19, 2015
Rep. Alan Grayson Explains Trade Deficit Harm
Campaign for America's Future

• Comment: "What’s happening is that day after day, month after month, and year after year, Americans are buying goods and services manufactured by foreigners, and those foreigners are not buying goods and services manufactured by Americans. We are creating millions — no — tens of millions of jobs in other countries with our purchasing power, and we are losing tens of millions of jobs in our country, because foreigners are not buying our goods and services."