“Buy American, Hire American”, the famous one-liner from Trump’s inaugural speech that has been played over and over on (fake) news outlets worldwide. Yet a tools factory in the swing state of Wisconsin was where The Donald carried out his pledge and signed an executive order aimed at cracking down on skilled worker visa abuse and forcing US government agencies to buy more domestically produced products. The move attempts to put a surplus in the Balance of Payments back onto the list of macroeconomic objectives. Instead it adds to “The list of reasons why Trump doesn’t understand economics”.
Economists have come under repeated criticism in recent years. In an era of refined economic theories supported by advanced models and tools, economists continue to face challenges in forecasting changes in the economy and forewarning crises reliably. The 2008 financial crisis, post-recession recovery and the economic impacts on the UK of the Brexit vote are three recent, high profile examples of misjudged forecasting. These events have shaken the confidence in modern economic theories and models.