Trump’s Astonishingly Different Trade Doctrine

The Trump Trade Doctrine, Navarro and Ross are certain, will get America out of its current trade war as well.  Why?  Because of one “very simple reason: America’s major trading partners are far more dependent on American markets than America is on their markets.”  The “obvious Trump negotiating strength” will rebalance trade with the six countries that hold half the US deficit: Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Mexico and South Korea.

Special Edition: The Japanese Memo on Brexit

Many things are interesting in this policy document, but perhaps most important is that the Japanese government is putting out policy details that are far more advanced than many of the statements made by officials thus far in the UK (or the EU) on the topic of Brexit.  While much of the Brexit debate appears to have remained at the “30,000 foot level,” the Japanese have gotten down to the details that are going to be critically important in negotiations.

US Presidential Candidates and A Potentially Looming Trade Catastrophe

For a full picture of what this year’s election might hold for the US economy, the fine folks at the Peterson Institute of International Economics (PIIE) have helpfully released the attached study on the economic plans of both candidates.  It makes for grim reading. The bottom line—if Donald Trump becomes President, the economic consequences for the United States are substantial, negative and sharp.  Clinton’s current rejection of the TPP is not helpful, but would not cause the same kind of lasting damage.

ASEAN: Still More Process Than Destination

Perhaps the most honest statement in the entire Chairman's Statement is this one:  “Most of the recommendations are perpetual in nature and will remain relevant as we continue our integration efforts.”  It may be time for ASEAN to simplify the agenda and focus on actually delivering results.  In the economic sphere, companies are not going to go on a journey forever without reaching a destination. 

TPP Collapse? Plan B for Everybody Else

Few firms buy and sell goods or services in just one market—even if that one market is huge.  In the long run, larger, more comprehensive agreements are much better for firms than smaller, more limited agreements.  This is what makes the TPP such an important agreement for business.  But, if the deal never makes it out of Capitol Hill in Washington, the remaining TPP countries have many options that can be pursued in the near term.  As Plan B strategies go, these are certainly better than nothing.