© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

International Trade Introduction

International trade has always played a key role in American economic success, ever since the colonial settlers at Jamestown started shipping tobacco back to England in the 1610s. 

The world of international trade has gotten a lot more complicated since then, but the same basic principles still apply.

Learn the value of free trade from an understanding of comparative advantage, then consider the effects of trade policies like tariffs, embargoes, and quotas.

Only have a minute? Read the International Trade Overview

Our Ph.D.s scoured the Web (so you don't have to).

We've got a lotta' links: video, music, websites, photos... you get the drift.

  • What is a “strong“ or “weak” currency?
  • What is a trade surplus?
  • What are the basic arguments in favor of free trade?

So, you think it's easy to make the big decisions? Take your turn in the hot seat.

The situation: You're the President of the United States and you've got a serious headache on your hands. Chinese producers are flooding the U.S. market with cheaper tires. Your constituents are calling for a smack-down in the form of a massive tariff. But a tariff might have all kinds of unintended consequences. 

Love Us? Hate Us? Date Us?

Economics Beta Testers: take our survey

People who Shmooped this also Shmooped...