Summary of The End of China’s Export Juggernaut

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China’s dominance of US imports began in the 1990s and peaked in 2010. Since then, Chinese shares of apparel, electronics and other manufactured goods coming into the United States have leveled off. According to this succinct report from economists Thomas Klitgaard and Harry Wheeler, the plateau comes as manufacturing heats up in developed countries like Japan and as competition increases for low-cost labor in emerging markets like Vietnam. getAbstract suggests this overview to executives and others interested in the dynamics of China’s economy.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How China’s share of US imports is trending,
  • Why competition from other countries is eating into China’s export capacity and
  • What China must do to sustain economic growth as its status as an export powerhouse declines.

About the Authors

Thomas Klitgaard is a vice president at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, where Harry Wheeler is a senior research analyst.



Chinese exports of manufactured goods destined for the United States experienced two decades – from 1990 to 2010 – of rapid growth. The upswing in Chinese products entering America was particularly strong between 2002 and 2010, when China’s share of US apparel imports rose from 25% to 50%, and its share of electronic imports jumped from 15% to 40%. Import growth for China’s general and electrical machinery was not as pronounced but was still considerable during this period.

China benefited from this impressive expansion...

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