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Trade News Archive: 16 October - 22 October
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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.
 

Monday, October 20, 2014
Stop Smokin The Import Crack…
Zero Hedge

• Comment: "What if the Chinese would like to make sure that the Yuan fluctuation, which is seemingly regulated by the government, remains low for the benefit of the Chinese? The Chinese are merely looking for a pathway to keep the currency low to promote the goods produced in China as financially attractive as possible. With some esoteric currency plays and good ole fashioned financial engineering, it’s possible and already in play. "
Report: U.S. furniture industry poised for turnaround
Triad Business Journal

• Comment: "The U.S. furniture industry is starting to rebound from the recession in terms of sales and orders, according to a new report."
Plastics manufacturer to close Houston plant
Houston Business Journal

• Comment: "Pexco LLC, which designs and fabricates specialty plastic parts, plans to close its northwest Houston facility, affecting 40 jobs."

Sunday, October 19, 2014
What China Means by ‘Rule of Law’
New York Times

• Comment: "This is not to say that China is about to abandon its preoccupation with “social stability,” which too often means silencing or imprisoning peaceful dissenters and activists who blow the whistle on some of the country’s many woes, including environmental degradation, abuses of power and needless policies against Tibetans and Uighurs."

Friday, October 17, 2014
Business leaders call for completion of China investment treaty
The Hill

• Comment: "More than 50 business leaders on Wednesday called on President Obama to make the completion of a bilateral investment treaty the focus of meetings next month in China. The 51 U.S. chief executives sent a letter to the White House supporting a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) and asking the president to make such discussions a high priority with China's President Xi Jinping in November."
Crony Communism in China
New York Times

• Comment: "Unscrupulous officials have been stealing more since the early 1990s thanks partly to a large increase in infrastructure spending. Lucrative contracts for roads, ports and railways are opportunities for them to enrich themselves or their cronies. Investment in infrastructure, real estate and other fixed assets rose from an average of 36 percent of G.D.P. during 1980-1991 to more than 41 percent during 1992-2011."
GT Advanced workers to lose jobs at Apple plant right before Christmas
Phoenix Business Journal

• Comment: "More than 700 Arizona workers for GT Advanced Technologies will start losing their jobs just before Christmas, according to a notification sent to the city of Mesa Thursday."

Thursday, October 16, 2014
Treasury Says It Again: China Does Not Manipulate Currency
Industry Week

• Comment: "However, the yuan remained "significantly undervalued," the Treasury said, reiterating the description it has long used in pressing China to allow its currency to move toward a market-determined exchange rate.The Treasury has consistently decided to not brand China a currency manipulator, which could lead Congress to impose sanctions on the world's second-largest economy and top holder of U.S. debt."
Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization - G.17
Federal Reserve

• Comment: "Industrial production increased 1.0 percent in September and advanced at an annual rate of 3.2 percent in the third quarter of 2014, roughly its average quarterly increase since the end of 2010. In September, manufacturing output moved up 0.5 percent, while the indexes for mining and for utilities climbed 1.8 percent and 3.9 percent, respectively. For the third quarter as a whole, manufacturing production rose at an annual rate of 3.5 percent and mining output increased at an annual rate of 8.7 percent. The output of utilities fell at an annual rate of 8.5 percent for a second consecutive quarterly decline."
October Manufacturing Business Outlook Survey
Philadelphia Fed

• Comment: "The October Manufacturing Business Outlook Survey suggests continued expansion of the region’s manufacturing sector. Firms reported continued increases in new orders but slower growth in activity, shipments, and employment this month. The survey’s future activity indexes remained at high readings, suggesting continued optimism about manufacturing growth. Firms were less optimistic about employment increases over the next six months, but one-third of the firms still expect to hire additional workers."
Inside the Ring: Chinese Company Tried to Beat NSA at Its Own Game
Washington Free Beacon

• Comment: "Chinese telecommunications equipment giant Huawei Technologies sought to gain access to National Security Agency computer networks this year in a failed cyberespionage attack, U.S. officials said."