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“It is the maxim of every prudent master of a family, never to attempt to make at home what it will cost him more to make than to buy . . . . If a foreign country can supply us with a commodity cheaper than we ourselves can make it, better buy it of them with some part of the produce of our own industry, employed in a way in which we have some advantage.”

-Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, 1776

IPI believes the United States should aggressively pursue trade liberalization, which includes a willingness to lower our own trade barriers even when other countries do not respond reciprocally.  Ideally, those efforts include multilateral agreements, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but bilateral agreements can also promote freer trade. 

American consumers bear the brunt of the protectionist impulse through higher prices on consumer goods, and American workers are best served when liberalized trade policies facilitate the export of American products throughout the world.  At a time when protectionist sentiments are growing, it is important to assert that the U.S. and its workers have nothing to fear from trade, and everything to gain.

February 11, 2020

Two Cheers for Trump's Budget and a Big Boo for Democrats' Response

A step-in-the-right-direction budget—if the reality matches the rhetoric, which it often doesn't.

January 15, 2020

A Balanced Assessment of the U.S.- China Trade Deal

One of the president's top trade advisors sees nothing but positives from imposing tariffs. A more balanced view sees some positives, but many negatives. 

August 20, 2019

The Recession Threat Is Real

President Trump and administration officials are downplaying fears of a recession. While a recession isn't imminent, the threat is very real. 

August 1, 2019

How Is the Tariff Working Out for the U.S. Steel Industry?

President Trump presumably wants to help the steel industry prosper. To do that, his administration needs to find an acceptable tariff exit strategy as quickly as possible. 

July 30, 2019

Back to the Slow-Growth Economy

The economy is doing well, just not as well as we thought—or hoped. If Trump plans to run for reelection on a record of strong economic growth, he needs to resolve some lingering issues.

June 5, 2019

Tariffs Are Taxes

President Trump is threatening to raise taxes on Americans. Again. That’s because tariffs are taxes, and they are paid by Americans, not by foreigners.

May 30, 2019

Iran Can Rattle Sabers But Not Oil Prices

The Iranian government is rattling sabers once again. In years past those tensions would have sent world oil markets into a panic. Not so this time around. 

February 17, 2019

Steel Tariffs Steal Your Gasoline Savings

President Trump’s pro-energy policies are on a collision course with his protectionist policies. Let’s hope, for the sake of the economy and energy independence, his energy policies prevail.

February 1, 2019

SOTU: While Democrats Push for Bigger Government, Trump Can Highlight Some Big Achievements

President Trump delivers his first State of the Union address before a divided Congress on Tuesday night, where his priorities to unfetter the private sector, rev up economic engines and enhance national security will starkly contrast Democrats’ increasingly socialist-leaning platform.

January 24, 2019

As Putin Props Up Maduro, Trump Heats Up U.S. Energy to Undermine Russian Global Mischief

new round of White House executive actions may be coming to boost the U.S. energy industry against Russia, an ongoing effort that’s hitting Russia’s pocketbook and making it more difficult for Vladimir Putin to use oil and gas as a foreign policy weapon to promote his agenda.

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