Free trade agreements, cheap stuff, and American jobs

American Pottery Maker Haeger Pottery is closing after 145 years.

Yes, you read it right, ONE HUNDRED FORTY-FIVE YEARS.

You see, we still have American companies that are “senior citizen” in age, but, alas, they are dying because of “free trade and cheap products” not old age.”

Haeger is a Chicago area company based in East Dundee, a suburb of Chicago. To quote a fourth-generation owner of the family-operated business, Haeger Estes:

“… it became increasingly difficult for the artware and decorative accessory business to stay open. Gift shops and independent furniture stores are hard to come by, she said, and larger stores are buying their goods from abroad.”

I checked the Ebay® auction website and there are 4,137 Haeger items for sale (on 5/31/2016)! If you are a fan of the PBS television series, Antiques Roadshow (I sure am), we will probably start seeing their pottery featured more frequently. In the spirit of supply and demand, the prices of Haeger pottery should start rising. That’s how the system works. Their retail store at the pottery manufacturing plant started selling out of its inventory when the news became public about the manufacturer closing its doors forever.

Haeger began its business in the “horse and buggy era” of Chicago in 1871. Haeger even made bricks to rebuild Chicago after its great fire. Now there’s “some history for ya”. Of course its age does not match that of some of the companies in Europe, e.g. Lloyd’s of London (1811) or the Bank of England (1694), but considering that the United States as a sovereign nation is 240 years old, Haeger lasting 145 isn’t too shabby in my book.

Since I’m currently attending the Blogging 201 course, it is suggested that I offer the reader every so often an archive of relevant past postings. In that spirit, take your choice of any topic that may be of interest to you from the following:

Signs of the Times #3: Thoughts on Jobs and Jobs Training

Signs of the Times #8: Thriving or Dying-which type of industry do you work in?

Eye Crosser #14: Current Account Deficit

Mega Eye Crosser #3: Trade Deficits & a little Bit about Exchange Rates

Is a Strong U.S. Dollar Good or Bad?

Addendum to Is a Strong U.S. Dollar Good or Bad

What is the Import – Export Bank?

And, as always, thanks for stopping by.

3 thoughts on “Free trade agreements, cheap stuff, and American jobs

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