The benefits of mercantilism include increased employment, the development of new technologies and products, and positive cultural exchanges as mercantilist nations seek new markets and raw material sources, whereas the disadvantages of the system include increased conflict between nations, growth in trade protectionism and the development of trade monopolies. The Library of Economics and Liberty defines mercantilism as a form of nationalism aimed at building a wealthy and powerful state.Know More
The philosophy is based on the belief that maximizing exports and minimizing imports is the best route to national prosperity. Mercantilism dominated the economic policies of many European countries from the period between the 16th century and the late 18th century. According to the Library of Economics and Liberty, the philosophy led to the reduction of barter trade as countries switched to bullion-based monetary systems. Mercantilism also sparked a huge increase in the volume and breadth of trade between countries, and it contributed to the growth of colonialism. A gradual decline in the contribution of agriculture to national wealth was another result of the policy. Mercantilism contributed to the development of full-time standing armies and navies because mercantilist nations scrambled to protect markets and sources of raw materials.
The philosophy is largely discredited. As explained by Wikipedia, its fall from grace can be traced to the rise in importance of capitalism, a philosophy championed by Adam Smith. He is considered by many as the father of modern economics.Learn more about Economics
The advantages of trading blocs include easy access to each other's markets, protection of individual markets from cheap imports and increased trade between member countries. Disadvantages of trading blocs include limited trade with producers outside the trading bloc, distortion of world trade and retaliation by other countries.Full Answer >
Advantages of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations include the elimination of tariffs between member states, which has reduced product prices due to increased competition within the market, and possible investment opportunities in the market. Among the disadvantages of ASEAN are the risk of an influx of cheap imports flooding local markets and the existence of poor governance structures in some member countries.Full Answer >
Supporters of labor unions argue that they give allow workers greater opportunities for securing higher wages, benefits and better working environments, while opponents criticize labor unions on the grounds that they escalate prices for market goods and make employment markets less competitive. Those in favor of labor unions contend that without unions, workers would be subject to lower living standards, less safe working conditions and discrimination. Contrarily, others assert that labor unions provide benefits to a small segment of the economy and national workforce at the expense of others.Full Answer >
Mixed economies essentially create a balancing act between the private sector and government: these economies allow governments the opportunity to step in to correct market failures, but sometimes draw criticism for enabling too much governmental control. Mixed economies require participation and cooperation between the private sector (such as individual corporations and businesses) and the government. Ideally, these economies create strong, stable economies with minimal governmental interference. However, when the balance tips too far one way or the other, problems arise.Full Answer >