Bonus Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on March 18, 2017

in Balance of Payments, Crony Capitalism, Trade

is from Bob Higgs’s latest post at The Beacon – a post titled “Negative Balance of Trade?  So What?”:

balanceofpaymentsI place the balance of international payments data in the class of statistics for which the world would have been a happier place had the data never been devised, popularized (in a rough way), and used by policy makers.  This last aspect is the crux of the matter because the balance-of-trade data in particular can scarcely help but serve as a rationale for pernicious policies, such as export subsidies and tariffs, quotas, and other official restrictions on imports.  In short, the data help the government establish and maintain policies that enrich the privileged few at the expense of the unconnected many, including consumers in general and producers who rely on imported raw materials and components, as many do these days.

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