Can someone please explain something to me? Recently, I heard the president touting the growth in U. S. exports, saying exports were on track to double as he had promised. What in the world is he talking about?
If he’s talking about growth since the trough (which took place in 2009), it’s so modest a goal as hardly to be a goal at all. If he’s talking about growth relative to the peak (which took place in 2007), we’re not remotely close to doubling that.
If he’s talking about real growth in exports, that’s been flat for decades.
When he first mentioned this goal several years ago, I remarked on it. The U. S. exports an enormous amount already. Doubling that in real terms is a tall order. For that to occur other countries would need much higher incomes than, in fact, they have. Our balance of trade problems aren’t because we don’t export enough; they’re because we import too much.