Tuesday, November 08, 2005

News from the World ... Of socks

The Asia Times Online reports on a pending new textile trade agreement between the U.S. and China:


    … The squabble over textiles dates back to January 1 of this year, when the expiration of the Multi-Fiber Agreement opened the global textile market to the most competitive producing country - China. Vast increases in import quantities for particular goods quickly followed; Chinese imports of socks to the US, for example, increased from fewer than 12 million a year four years ago to a staggering 700 million pairs (five Chinese socks for every man, woman, and child in the US) in the first eight months of 2005 alone.

I haven't analyzed the economics of it yet -- the article has a detailed explanation I just don't have time to read this moment -- but the concept of "five socks per person" sounds exactly like a typical load of laundry for us.  The article does not say whether the five socks are four different colors or not.

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