In the fall of 2007, when the U.S. economy first seemed in peril, I began answering reader queries here on the Business Desk. I still do so occasionally, but this page has expanded to include posts from eminent economists, "far-flung correspondents," and a variety of voices that have intriguing and/or useful things to say about economics, broadly defined. Please feel encouraged to respond to any and all of them.
Do countries such as China react to counter downward trends in the U.S. economy?
City & State:
Question/Comment: Do countries such as China, which are so dependent on a healthy stable U.S. economy, react to counter downward trends in the U.S. economy (e.g., recession)? If so, what kinds of steps do they take?
Paul Solman: Yes, they certainly seem to. U.S. consumer spending still represents the biggest market for all those Chinese factories and their products. What do they do to protect themselves? Diversify their customer base. The real key would be to sell to their own people. That's why there's been so much talk of trying to get the Chinese government to persuade (induce? coerce?) its people to save less and spend more, meaning spend more at home.