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Thread: China trade now bigger than US

  1. #1
    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    China trade now bigger than US

    China is now the largest trading nation in the world in terms of imports and exports, after overtaking the US last year.

    China has leapfrogged the US to become the world’s biggest trading nation, bringing an end to the US’s post-war dominance of global commerce.

    The total value of US exports and imports in 2012 was $3.82 trillion (£2.4 trillion), the US Commerce Department has revealed. China’s customs administration has already announced that the country’s total trade last year was worth $3.87 trillion.
    “It is remarkable that an economy that is only a fraction of the size of the US economy has a larger trading volume,” Nicholas Lardy, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, told Bloomberg. “The surpassing of the US is not because of a substantially undervalued currency that has led to an export boom,” Mr Lardy said, pointing out that Chinese imports have grown at a faster rate than exports since 2007.

    Not only has China managed to post a larger total trading figure, but the breakdown of imports compared with exports also makes for favourable reading in Beijing. China had a full-year trade surplus of $231.1bn with the US posting a total 2012 trade deficit of $727.9bn.
    Indeed, the Asian powerhouse looks set to table an even better performance in 2013, as trade accelerated substantially last month. Exports jumped 25pc on a year-on-year basis and imports were up 29pc in January, beating analysts’ expectations. However, the data is distorted by the timing of the Chinese New Year festivities.

    -----

    $1tn disparity in balance in one single year?
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

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    Senior Contributor Monash's Avatar
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    According to a report I read the figures being quoted refer to the trade in"goods" only. Once the figures for "services" e.g. banking and other financial services etc are included the balance switches way back in favour of the U.S.
    Last edited by Monash; 12 Feb 13, at 06:29.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Monash View Post
    According to a report I read the figures being quoted refer to the trade in"goods" only. Once the figures for "services" e.g. banking and other financial services etc are included the balance switches way back in favour of the U.S.
    Still hard to fathom a 1 trillion dollar jump in goods in a single year. Specially with some metrics like steel and electrical production declining and companies like Foxconn flat on production. More likely its false reporting from the political sub units to hide their actual progress with some healthy numbers massaging at the end as well.

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    All economic figures are educated guesses. That being said, trade figures are generally considered to be reliable due to the fact that exchange of money is counted by multiple banks and several international organizations

    Also, there was a drop in the trade figure last year, so if ignore the short term figure and look at the long term trend, the number is generally close to the ball park.
    Last edited by xinhui; 12 Feb 13, at 16:22.
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    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    The report should have said "total exports and imports from Chinese companies in China, Hong Kong companies in China, Taiwan companies in China, Japanese companies in China, Korean companies in China, Singaporean companies in China, American companies in China, European companies in China and all the other foreign investors in China . . . "

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    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    How about dividing the companies in EVERY country by the origin of their investors?

    Also how would you say if some company is American if it's 51% owned by Saudis?

    Finally, what does it matter the money landed in China. And were departed from elsewhere.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doktor View Post
    How about dividing the companies in EVERY country by the origin of their investors?

    Also how would you say if some company is American if it's 51% owned by Saudis?

    Finally, what does it matter the money landed in China. And were departed from elsewhere.
    For companies that are 51% owned by foreigners, they should either uses the consolidated method or the equity method of accounting.

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    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    I wanna see a method for dual citizenship owners

    On a serious note. The trade was done by companies registered in China. Same method was done for companies registered in USA. The gap is $1tn. where US negative is $700+mn in goods only. If you add the services it's slightly better, making it only $500bn negative for 2012.

    But guess that's not a problem that Ctrl+P can't solve.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

  9. #9
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doktor View Post
    Finally, what does it matter the money landed in China. And were departed from elsewhere.

    From a tax perspective, an exporter who repatriates his profits to China isn't the sharpest knife in the drawer.

    From a management perspective, at least one-third of China's exports are run out of Hong Kong.

    On a value-added basis (remember the op-ed on iPhone components?), China's running a fair trade balance, just a bit over the top one way or the other, but not much.

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    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Q-1 2014 foreign trade

    BEIJING, April 10 (Xinhua) --- China's exports slumped 6.6 percent year on year in March mainly due to a large base figure inflated by rampant over-invoicing in the corresponding period last year, customs data showed on Thursday.

    Exports dropped to 170.11 billion U.S. dollars and imports were down 11.3 percent to 162.41 billion U.S. dollars, the General Administration of Customs (GAC) said.

    Total foreign trade volume declined 9 percent over the previous year to 332.52 billion U.S. dollars, and the trade balance returned to a surplus of 7.71 billion U.S. dollars in March after a deficit in the previous month, according to the administration.

    In the first quarter, combined exports and imports declined 1 percent year on year to 965.88 billion U.S. dollars.

    = = = = =

    Now, for some perspective:

    .*. In March, China’s $332.5 trade was larger than for the entire year of 1998.
    .*. The first quarter’s $975.2 billion was larger than the entire 1980s.
    .*. Last year’s $4.16 trillion topped the 1957-2000 sum of all imports and exports.

    So, let’s not fret too much about it.

  11. #11
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    David,

    Please correct if I am wrong but these numbers say to me that the Chinese buried their heads in fulfilling their orders rather than planning out what's happening next. In short, they're in for the ride rather than being in the driver seat.

    That is to say, their customers are dictating what they're doing rather than they themselves are creating the market place for their products.

  12. #12
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Colonel,

    China’s foreign trade isn’t owned by “the Chinese;” it is controlled (55% at least) by foreign companies. Companies fill orders, not nations. Companies decide what to make, or stop making; where to do it; and how much to charge.

    From the US perspective, we went from buying 30-35% of all our imports from Japan and the NICs in 1984-93, and 2-5% from China; to buying 20% from China and 10% from the others in recent years. During that time, the 32-40% purchased from East Asia has fallen to little more than 30%, largely because of lower prices. And, from an import manager’s point of view, source isn’t all that important if the product is better, cheaper and on-time.

    If demand in Europe is insufficient, and demand in the US is sluggish, there isn’t much people exporting from China can do about it. The policymakers and economists talk a lot about shifting from investment-led growth to consumption, but when you’re already making domestically just about everything – including Head & Shoulders Shampoo – that your customers buy, overall trade isn’t going to keep growing by leaps and bounds.

    The customers dictating what China makes and exports are very closely tied to the people making those products. If Apple wants a psychedelic iPhone case, Foxconn makes it.

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    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Hong Kong: 2014 Outlook Slower than Expected

    Hong Kong’s economy is likely to grow more slowly this year than originally forecast, according to an article published in this month’s issue of HKGCC’s magazine, The Bulletin. HKGCC’s Chief Economist David O’Rear [that's DOR to you, sir!] reported that data available through late April suggest real GDP growth will rise only 3-4% in 2014, down one point from the organization’s earlier forecast of 4-5%.

    “The key driver and largest sector of the Hong Kong economy is foreign trade. Without sufficient foreign demand, particularly in Europe and the United States, we will not perform well,” said O’Rear.

    Hong Kong’s imports rose more than twice as fast as exports in the first three months of the year, dragging overall growth to a lower level. Add to that an additional half-percent inflation (4.2% in Q-1), and the prospects are not as rosy as we had hoped for.

    “Although real GDP is finally rising in the Euro Area, domestic demand is not,” added Mr O’Rear. “Without strong demand in the OECD for the goods and services produced in this part of the world, East Asian exports will struggle to expand.” The EU may reach 1% real GDP growth this year, but domestic demand – where imports from East Asia are more directly affected – is likely still falling. Further, US imports dropped 4.2% in January-February from the same 2013 period. Japan is the sole bright spot, with imports rising more than 5% in dollar terms in the first quarter.

    “Hong Kong is very fortunate to have a strong, counter-cyclical growth driver in the form of tourism. This is not something we should take for granted, as it provides a critical support for the economy during difficult times,” said Mr O’Rear. Visitor arrivals were up 15.3% in the first quarter, with strong, 20.1% growth in arrivals from the Mainland of China, and an impressive rise in those coming from Korea, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines.

    The IMF’s latest forecasts confirms the Chamber’s view: global growth will reach just 3.6% in 2014 and only very slightly faster in 2015. World trade volumes will rise 4.3% in 2014 and 5.3% in 2015.


    Wednesday, 14 May, 2014

    At the same time . . .


    Why Should People in Central Have to Suffer?

    The international business community is very concerned about a potential threat to paralyze the Central Business District. We do not wish to interfere in the aspirations or debates on universal suffrage. However, we cannot and should not sit by when some people are threatening to disrupt our business operations. In short, Occupy Central organizers are threatening to take the business community hostage until their demands are met.

    We believe it is important that the general public hear the silent majority’s wish for maintaining the territory's stability and prosperity. Very little thought has been given to the cost and consequences of Occupy Central on the economy, businesses -- large and small -- people’s livelihoods, members of the public, and even business travellers.

    Hong Kong is an international business hub, so paralyzing the Central Business District will impact companies around the world. Some people could lose millions in business or their company, or even their home or job if they cannot meet a crucial deadline on a contract or with their lawyers if Central is paralyzed. Moreover, newspaper vendors, tea houses, and mom & pop shops in Central all depend on daily business for their livelihoods. Why should all these people have to suffer because of Occupy Central? What do they do when they cannot pay their staff a salary or bills? Who is listening to their voice?

    We hope the organizers of Occupy Central will very carefully consider how their actions will hurt everyone, from employees working in Central and neighbouring districts, to one-man businesses, to SMEs and even companies overseas. We respect people’s right to express their views, and hope Occupy Central organizers will also respect the views of the silent majority by not threatening our livelihoods.


    = = = = =


    Hong Kong is in for a long, hot summer . . .
    Last edited by DOR; 14 May 14, at 08:03.

  14. #14
    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOR View Post
    David O’Rear
    Ah...I've always wondered what DOR means.
    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

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    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    Speaking of trade, I have a question. How do nations signing trade agreement with each other, settling their trades using something other than the dollar, affect the US?
    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

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