Scale Back Regs; Don’t Impose Tariffs, Scholar Advises Trump

If President Trump focuses on scaling back regulations and cutting the corporate tax rate rather than imposing punitive tariffs, he'll stand a good chance of rejuvenating American manufacturing, says Merrill Matthews, resident scholar at the conservative Institute for Policy Innovation in Dallas, TX. “Donald Trump scored a major PR coup when Carrier Corp. and Ford Motor Co. -- concerned about potential tariffs and angering a new administration -- announced they would be keeping hundreds of manufacturing jobs in the U.S. rather than transferring them to Mexico,” writes Matthews in a commentary. “But if the 45th president really wants to revitalize U.S. manufacturing, he'll need to focus on companies of the future, not the past — because that's where the growth will be.” Matthews observes that a few decades ago, states like Indiana, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Michigan created manufacturing jobs “at a blistering pace.” He points to data from the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank showing that manufacturing jobs peaked in 1979 at nearly 20 million Americans. Then he pulls the plug, noting that “7 million of those positions have since disappeared.” Matthews correctly asserts that foreign competition is no the main culprit, a position with which most economists concur. “About 85% of the jobs were lost to advances in technology and automation,&rdquo [...]

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1/27/17 7:41 PM

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