Free trade does not kill jobs

Charles Campbell argues U.S. jobs are destroyed by free trade ("What's killing jobs?" Aug. 27). While some jobs are destroyed by free trade, overall the jury is in, and he is wrong. The United States was as trade-open in the Clinton years when we created lots of new jobs as it was in the Bush years when we lost jobs. We were protectionist in the run-up to the Great Depression. An alternative way to look at the question is to compare the United States to wealthy countries that currently do well. My native Austria is one of the most trade-open countries in the world (100 percent trade-to-GDP ratio, compared to about 25 percent for the United States), and Austria is among the economies with the lowest unemployment and best growth rates in the developed world, thanks to exports. We can discuss trade policy, but the evidence is clear on one count: trade does not destroy jobs.

Thomas Jandl, Washington

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