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The Political Economy of American Trade Policy

Exploring the political and economic determinants of trade protection, this study provides a wealth of information on key American industries and documents the process of seeking and conferring protection.

Eight analytical histories of the automobile, steel, semiconductor, lumber, wheat, and textile and apparel industries demonstrate that trade barriers rarely have unequivocal benefits and may be counterproductive. They show that criteria for awarding protection do not take into account the interests of consumers or other industries and that political influence and an organized lobby are major sources of protection.

Based on these findings, a final essay suggests that current policy fails to consider adequately economic efficiency, the public good, and indirect negative effects. This volume will interest scholars in economics, business, and public policy who deal with trade issues.

470 pages | 36 line drawings, 59 tables | 6 x 9 | © 1996

National Bureau of Economic Research Project Report

Economics and Business: Business--Business Economics and Management Studies

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Anne O. Krueger
1. Trade Politics and the Semiconductor Industry
Douglas A. Irwin
Comment: Andrew R. Dick
2. Steel Protection in the 1980s: The Waning Influence of Big Steel?
Michael O. Moore
Comment: William C. Lane
Comment: James R. Markusen
Comment: Michael H. Moskow
3. The Political Economy of U.S. Automobile Protection
Douglas R. Nelson
Comment: Anne E. Brunsdale, Randi Boorstein.
Comment: Richard N. Cooper
4. The MFA Paradox: More Protection and More Trade?
J. Michael Finger, Ann Harrison.
Comment: Robert E. Baldwin
Comment: I. M. Destler
5. Precedent and Legal Argument in U.S. Trade Policy: Do They Matter to the Political Economy of the Lumber Dispute?
Joseph P. Kalt
Comment: Geoffrey Carliner
6. The Political Economy of U.S. Export Subsidies for Wheat
Bruce L. Gardner
Comment: Robert Paarlberg
7. Agricultural Interest Groups and the North American Free Trade Agreement
David Orden
Comment: Robert Paarlberg
8. Differences in the Uses and Effects of Antidumping Law across Import Sources
Robert W. Staiger and Frank A. Wolak
Comment: Kala Krishna
Comment: Anne E. Brunsdale, Keith B. Anderson.
9. Conclusions
Anne O. Krueger
Contributors
Name Index
Subject Index

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