HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The share of international trade in U.S. national income has risen steadily from 9 percent in 1960, to roughly 30 percent today, and the annual gain to the US economy from international trade is on the order of $1 trillion a year. Expanded trade has contributed to income growth, but has probably exacerbated income and wealth inequality as well. As a consequence, the U.S. appears to be at the cusp of a potential turning point where the next administration could reverse course on 80 years of movement toward freer trade and enhanced multilateral cooperation.
Possible impact on the U.S. and Hawai'i economies of trade policies advocated by the two major party presidential nominees include the rejection of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the imposition of high tariffs on trade with Mexico and China, and the abrogation of existing free trade agreements.
Dr. Marcus Noland is a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the East-West Center and the Executive Vice President and Director of Studies at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, D.C. He worked for the Council of Economic Advisers during the Clinton Administration, and has held research or teaching positions at Yale University, the Johns Hopkins University, the University of Southern California, Tokyo University, the Japanese National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, the University of Ghana, and the Korea Development Institute.