Column: International trade lowers poverty, increases wealth

One of the most vexing issues to economists is how poorly most people understand international trade.

Among economists of all stripes there is no more fully recognized truth than the benefits of trade. From Milton Friedman to Paul Krugman, and everyone in between, it is well understood that trade increases wealth, reduces poverty and generally makes everyone better off in the long run.

The only real question is whether the total economic benefits are immediately realized or take just a few years to mature.

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