Project #97926 - Long Term trends in foreign trade with U.S.

 

Week 11: 

 

U.S. Foreign Trade - Databases

 

 This week we begin the last major assignment for the semester.  For this assignment we will be working with U.S. foreign trade information..

 

 

 

The purpose of this assignment is to provide you with some realistic experience working with large databases.  You will need to determine what data is relevant to your assignment and then locate the data you will need to write the final report.  Much of the data you will encounter will appear to be similar to other data.   It will be your job to parse out which data is directly appropriate to use in your report and which is not.  Your first task will be to locate the databases that contain the data you need for the assignment.

 

 

 

As computers have become more ubiquitous it has allowed organizations to accumulate large amounts of data on virtually any subject and hold the data in large databases.  Even now, your credit card company has accumulated information on you and millions of people like you that hold one of its credit cards.  From this data the company can determine what you what day of the week you tend to do your grocery shopping, what you buy, where you shop, when you travel, where you travel, and if the travel is for business or vacation, as well as a multitude of other information about you and millions of people like you.  All of this information is held in one, or more, databases.

 

 

 

The key to making data useful is knowing how to extract information from the databases and knowing what information in the database will be useful for a specific purpose.  For this assignment we will concentrate on the United States’ foreign trade.  The Census Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce is the official federal government organization to collect and store information on foreign trade.  That includes data on both imports and exports.  The assignment contains a link to the Foreign Trade section of the Census Bureau.  The necessary information is all stored in several large databases Summaries of these data are published routinely on set schedules.  The publication schedule varies with each set of data.

 

 

 

On the Assignments tool there is an assignment titled, “Long Term Trends in U.S. Foreign Trade”.  You have been asked to write a report for your employer, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  This report will cover the changes in the United States’ top trading partners over the last 20 years.

 

 

 

Week 12: 

 

Researching the U.S. Trade Report

 

            Last week you should have located all the data you will need to complete the report.  Don’t forget that in addition to determining with are the top five countries to which the U.S. sends it exports and the top five countries from which the U.S. receives its imports, you must also identify the major goods and services which the U.S. exports to each of the top five export countries and the major goods and services the U.S. receives from each of the five top countries that import to us.

 

1.)       Top five countries in which the U.S. sends exports:

 

2.)       in which U.S. receives its imports:

 

3.)       Identify the major goods and services which the U.S. exports to each of the top five export countries

 

4.)       Identify the major goods and services which the U.S. receives from each of the top five countries that import to us.

 

Once you have located the data you will need I suggest you begin to develop and outline for your report.  In the outline you will need to determine what graphic images you will need to display the data you will use to support your text in the report.

 

            When you are satisfied with the outline of your report and you have a list of all the graphic material you will need to support the text of the report.  Don’t shortcut this activity.  Experiment with different graphics.  Only by experimenting with the images can you determine with specific format works the best.  When I am writing reports similar to this one I will sometimes create six eight different versions with different charts of different dimensions before I decide which one will work the best.  Don’t just use the first one you create because it has all the data points in it.  Remember, you are to write the report so the reader can quickly and easily understand your message.  If I must squint at the graphic at the graphic in order to read it, it is probably too small to be very effective.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long Term Trends in U.S. Foreign Trade

 

 

You have found an excellent job as a writer and analyst for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is a federation of United States businesses. One of the items that the Chamber tracks closely is U.S. foreign trade. While the Chamber closely tracks both imports and exports on a monthly basis it occasionally finds it necessary to step back and look at the long-term trends in foreign trade. As one of your first jobs you have been asked to prepare an analysis of the changes that have occurred in the United States’ foreign trade patterns over the last 20 years. The last 20 years are defined as the years 1995 to 2014, inclusive.  2014 is the last year for which complete data are available. This report will be distributed to the member companies of the Chamber and will, no doubt, be some of the information used by individual companies to create their own long-term strategic plans.

This assignment is to be submitted as a formal report.  A formal report will require the following items.

  • Transmittal letter
  • Title page
  • Table of Contents with page number for each heading and subheading
  • Separate List of Figures with the figure number, title and page number for each figure
  • Page numbers
  • Headings and subheadings as needed
  • Citations for all sources used in the report
  • References, or Works Cited, page 

The report should be written in a style and format that will be easily understood by the average business person that is involved in, or wants to become involved in, either imports or exports in at least a minimal way.

In order to complete this study you have been asked to identify the five countries of origin with the largest amount of goods and services imported into the United States in 1995 and the five countries to which the United States’ exported the largest amount of goods and services in 1995. All import and export quantities will be expressed in U.S. dollars. Collect the same information for the year 2014. There probably will be some changes in the countries represented in the top five of both imports and exports over this 20-year period. Of those countries on the lists at both ends of the time period you will also probably find some changes in their position within the top five.

Once you have identified the countries that are the largest importers into the United States and the largest receivers of exports from the United States at both ends of the 20-year period provide the following information.

  • What were the import, or export, trends for each of the countries over the 20-year period? When did countries drop off the top five lists and when did other countries join the top five lists?
  • For those countries that continued on the top five lists for the entire period, how did their position change vis-à-vis the other members of the list? We are looking for long-term trends here. Was there a lot of yearly shifting of positions on the list or were there steady trends that might be valid for extrapolating into the future?
  • What are the major goods and services driving the changes in the list? What are the big items that, over time, create changes in the list? Which U.S. export products are on the rise and which are declining? What are the major import products coming into the U.S.? How have these imports changed over 20 years? The members of the U. S. Chamber of Commerce are looking to you to provide some insight into the major import and Export markets for the United States.  Of course, you will only be able to write about the legal imports and exports, so the illegal drug market will probably be beyond this assignment.

 

When writing your report, and especially when constructing tables or charts, make very clear to the reader when you are referring to "imports" do you mean imports into the U.S. or imports into the country receiving U.S. exports.  Be equally clear when discussing "exports" Remember, every export is also an import somewhere else.  When referring to imports and exports it is best to state; "Imports into the United States" or "Exports from Slovakia to the United States".

In addition to documenting the numbers involved in the national foreign trade patterns, provide an analysis of why these changes are taking place and what the implications are for the United States’ economy. In order to do this analysis you will need to do some additional research on the specific trade items you have identified as driving forces for changing trade patterns. You will probably want to search specialized web sites devoted to the individual commodities you have identified.

I will suggest you spend the first week of this assignment documenting and writing about the actual trade numbers. Once you have completed that part of the assignment you can then devote the second week researching and writing about individual markets and commodities.  There will be a draft report due on November 22, the third week.

The official data collector and disseminator of United States trade data is the U.S. Census Bureau. Trade data may be accessed through the Bureau’s web site, located at

http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/index.html.  This is probably the best place to start your research.  You might want to start with the FT900 reports for an overview of foreign trade.  However, there are a number of other files on the U.S. Census web page that will be useful for your research.  I suggest you spend some time becoming familiar with the data available.  As a caution, these are large files and may take some time to open.  After you locate the files you need I suggest you download the files to your computer.  It is then easier for you to use them.

 

You may, of course, use any addition reliable source of information you can locate. 

Tips:

When writing your report, and especially when constructing tables or charts, make very clear to the reader when you are referring to "imports" do you mean imports into the U.S. or imports into the country receiving U.S. exports.  Be equally clear when discussing "exports" Remember, every export is also an import somewhere else.  When referring to imports and exports it is best to state; "Imports into the United States" or "Exports from Slovakia to the United States".


Be aware there are various ways imports and exports are categorized.  For example, some files contain information on “Goods and Services”.  Other files contain information on “Goods” only.  Don’t mix the two up.  For this report we want to report on Goods and Services.

We will be reporting trade measured in U.S. dollars.  Be careful to determine the values you find in the files you are researching.  Some file may list values in thousands of dollars, other files may be in millions of dollars or billions of dollars.  Make sure you are reporting the same values in all of the data you include in the report.

You are reporting information over a 20 year time period.   It may, or may not, be practical to show changes in movement for each year.  Your table, chart or other way of presenting the information may not be very readable if you report in too much detail.  I suggest you experiment with different intervals to determine which interval makes it easy for the reader to understand your message.

Remember, you instructor will be reading your report and your instructor is basically lazy.  He does not want to spend a lot of time trying to figure out what your message you are trying to communicate.  Make sure you follow the three-second rule.

If you have not figured it out already, I will warn you this is not an assignment you can complete Sunday evening.  Just locating the information you need is time consuming.  The data bases contain a lot more information than what you need.  Learning how to use the data bases to give you the information you need is part of the learning experience of this assignment.  I have found that downloading the flies into Excel on my computer allows me to easily search the spreadsheet for the data I need and hide or delete the data I don’t need.

 

 

 

Title page and transmittal letter is already completed. http://www.wikiupload.com/TTVWK41921GA4ZR http://www.wikiupload.com/QSK5HUV0QKXR9GX

Subject Business
Due By (Pacific Time) 12/08/2015 12:00 am
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