Merchandise-Trade Growth Rate Doubling

By John S. McClenahen The deepening U.S. current account trade deficit reflects another reality: The increase in global manufacturing trade this year is likely to outpace the advance in U.S. GDP by more than 2 to 1. "The growth of world merchandise trade in 2000 will be about 10%, twice the rate recorded for 1999 and one of the highest [rates] in the last decade," projects the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva. Reflecting a slowing U.S. economy, the growth rate of world trade in goods is expected to be under the 10% mark in 2001, but still well above the 6.5% average rate of increase during the 1990s, says the WTO.

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