I saw this graph at Carpe Diem and wondered what the Australian equivalent would look like.
So a quick visit to the ABS (I couldn’t easily find real imports of goods and services, so nominal will have to do) and voila:
Not quite as nice a picture as the US data (he used real data, I have nominal) but the same basic story. An Australian correlation between the two series of 0.9874 compared to the US correlation of 0.964. Now I know correlation is not causation blah, blah, blah, but completely and utterly inconsistent with protectionist arguments.