Thanks to the National Association of Manufacturers' ShopFloor.org for pointing out this news: According to the latest trade data, the United States is now the third largest exporting country in the world.
It used to surprise audiences a few yeas ago to learn the the largest exporter in the world was the United States. In fact, we held that title for a long time, until Germany nudged us aside a year or two ago. Then we were the second largest exporter. The world does not stand still and it's a darn competitive place out there. Yesterday the World Trade Organization released the latest trade data and in the last six months of 2006, China nudged us out of even second place, making the US the third largest exporter in the world. With current trends, China will become the world's largest exporter in 2008.Here's a link to WTO's full news release on the trade data. NAM takes a pro-trade stance, pointing out that, "It's well documented that jobs in exporting firms pay more than jobs in companies that sell only domestically. Innovation drives a big part of our exports and if the U.S. is slipping, what does it say about policies here that encourage exporting and innovation?" Free trade agreements are a tough sell in Washington right now, so it's likely that the United States might slip to No. 4 or No. 5 in the near future.