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APRIL 24, 2000
COVER STORY

DATA: Business Week


The Pros and Cons of Globalization


PLUSES

-- Productivity grows more quickly when countries produce goods and services in which they have a comparative advantage. Living standards can go up faster.

-- Global competition and cheap imports keep a lid on prices, so inflation is less likely to derail economic growth.

-- An open economy spurs innovation with fresh ideas from abroad.

-- Export jobs often pay more than other jobs.

-- Unfettered capital flows give the U.S. access to foreign investment and keep interest rates low.



MINUSES

-- Millions of Americans have lost jobs due to imports or production shifts abroad. Most find new jobs--that pay less.

-- Millions of others fear losing their jobs, especially at those companies operating under competitive pressure.

-- Workers face pay-cut demands from employers, which often threaten to export jobs.

-- Service and white-collar jobs are increasingly vulnerable to operations moving offshore.

-- U.S. employees can lose their comparative advantage when companies build advanced factories in low-wage countries, making them as productive as those at home.




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