International trade supports about 39 million jobs in the U.S., a ratio of about one in five, challenging the view that a more open economy leads to the displacement of American workers, according to a new report.
More 1.2 million jobs in Georgia can be linked to imports and exports, a number that includes the direct effects of goods trade but, more relevantly, encompasses jobs related to the movement of imported goods (logistics and warehousing jobs) and consumers’ increased spending power due to the lower prices of imports. Buying cheaper goods means Americans have more disposable income to spend on other products and services.
Indeed, the bulk of the net new jobs calculated by the report (35 million) were in the services sector, with 1.2 million in construction, 8.7 million in wholesale and retail trade, 1.3 million in finance and 6 million in business and professional services. The only sector for which trade had a net negative impact on jobs was in energy, at -547,300.
The Trade Partnership Worldwide conducted the annual study on the net employment on the impact of imports and exports for the Business Roundtable, a pro-trade lobbying group.
Using what it argues is a fuller picture of trade’s effects than traditional trade balances, the report takes to task President Donald Trump’s widely shared assertion that trade deficits result in net job losses for Americans.
The report notes that trade accounts for about twice the proportion of American jobs that it did in 1994, when NAFTA entered into force.
It also breaks down trade’s impact by bilateral relationship, with the U.S. trade relationship Canada accounting for 7.1 million jobs, Mexico for 4.9 million, China for 7.3 million, Japan for 1.3 million, Korea for 1 million, the European Union for 5.7 million and the United Kingdom for 1.2 million.
The image above provides a breakdown of Georgia jobs supported by its trade with various trading partners.
Click here for the full report.