Now the Real Pain Begins

Sergio Perez / Reuters

Stalled: A billion unsold bricks have piled up in La Sagra, Spain's brick-manufacturing center

Cash Crunch
Not long ago, American businessmen flocked to trade shows in Guangzhou, China, searching for bargains from the country's southern factories. "Americans are famous for one thing," says Ken Melwani, Hong Kong – based director of trading company Nikita, whose 10 Chinese manufacturing plants turn out women's undergarments for export to Latin America and Africa. "They don't care about quantity. They just want to know: 'What is the price?'" This year, Melwani noticed that U.S. buyers weren't coming anymore. And something else was different. His bank has stopped pushing...

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