CIRAS DIGEST: Tuesday, August 11, 2015

  • Warren Buffett’s desire to buy an aerospace supplier for $37.2 billion (see this New York Times story) unleashed much commenting on the Internet. This video shows Bloomberg News commentators responding to Twitter questions and using them to argue that a strong dollar has made U.S. workers more expensive compared to manufacturing elsewhere.
  • Meanwhile, a new study by something called the Economic Policy Institute argues that the U.S. manufacturing sector would be a lot stronger if not for the trade deficits that preceded the 2007 economic meltdown. According to the report, “Taken together, steps to eliminate trade deficits (by ending currency manipulation and unfair trade) and rebuild U.S. infrastructure could easily generate sufficient demand for manufactured products to return most or all of the 5 million manufacturing jobs lost between 2000 and 2014. Growing trade deficits and the shortfall in demand caused by the Great Recession, and not productivity growth, are the major causes of manufacturing job loss in this period.”
  • Speaking of trade, a site called World Finance has a solid and interesting piece on “The Acceleration of Mexico’s car Manufacturing Industry.” Lots of details on why and how it’s working for them.
  • Meanwhile, the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s website has a column from an academic who studies the energy industry describing how “Cheap Energy is Reviving Manufacturing in America’s Industrial Heartland.”
  • And RN, a radio product of the Australian Broadcasting Corp., has a story on how things like 3-D printing and crowdfunding have made it easier than ever for small-scale manufacturers to thrive.
  • And finally, speaking of the economy in broader terms, The Des Moines Register has a collection of “4 signs the Des Moines Economy is Surging”

Thanks for reading.

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