Saturday, September 06, 2008

Shoe Tariff Steals $5B A Year From U.S. Consumers

With the exception of high-end footwear, more than 95% of the shoes Americans wear are produced outside the U.S. Yet the U.S. still imposes a tax on imported shoes that can reach as high as 67%, a legacy (believe it or not) of the Smoot-Hawley tariff of 1930. Shoe tariffs raise more money than auto tariffs, and the tax is applied most heavily on the lowest-priced imported footwear.

"This is the most regressive policy in America today," says Ed Gresser of the Progressive Policy Institute. "The biggest victims are poor, single mothers." He's right. The tariff steals about $5 billion a year from U.S. consumers, and a family that shops at Payless or Wal-Mart typically pays a $5 duty on a $15 pair of sneakers.

5 Comments:

At 9/06/2008 8:35 AM, Anonymous QT said...

Like the article says pay-go rules mean that repealing one tax means you have to increase taxes or reduce spending.

Chances are pretty good this tax is here to stay.

 
At 9/06/2008 12:35 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"that repealing one tax means you have to increase taxes or reduce spending"...

Exactly qt!

BTW I wonder what Uncle Sam did with all that money?

Rhertorical question of course...

All one has to do is look at what Uncle Sam did with the Highway Trust Fund to guess at what happened to the tariffs collected...

 
At 9/06/2008 2:19 PM, Blogger randian said...

Wow! The duty is higher than the wholesale cost of the sneakers.

 
At 9/07/2008 1:32 AM, Anonymous QT said...

Curious, under pay-go, the government has little incentive to eliminate counterproductive tarriffs or save money but will still manage to weasel in earmarks so that they can keep right on spending.

 
At 9/08/2008 11:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought you'd be interested in knowing the American Apparel & Footwear Association (where I intern) has launched a website to fight costly shoe tariffs. The legislation is named The Affordable Footwear Act. Learn more at www.endtheshoetax.org

 

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