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Pierre Lemieux is intrepid – thankfully so – in his efforts to rid popular discussion of the myth that imports ‘subtract’ from GDP [2].  A slice:

By definition, GDP is made of domestically-produced goods for consumption, investment, government expenditures, and exports, that is, C+I+G+X. When they actually measure GDP [3], however, statisticians only find a C, an I, and a G that include imported goods and services. In order to correct for that, they have to remove all imports from the formula, which becomes the familiar C+I+G+X-M, where M represents imports. Compounding the error, the formula is usually written as C+I+G+(X-M), where (X-M) is labelled “net exports,” a subliminal version of the trade balance. It looks as if net imports subtract from GDP while, in fact, M is subtracted only because it was already hidden in the available data.

Mark Perry rewrites a Bloomberg report on trade to make it more accurate [4].

Michael Rappaport compares us in our roles as consumers to us in our roles as voters [5].

Brian O’Brien is no fan of conscription [6].

Steve Landsburg imagines a conversation between Greg Mankiw and Larry Summers on corporate taxes [7].

James Pethokoukis reports on a new San Francisco Fed study that finds upward economic mobility to be better than is commonly believed [8].

Back to trade and protectionism: here’s Walter Olson on wine [9].

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