Money: Cutting the Losses

For the past half-dozen years, a remarkable number of economic decisions have been affected by one persistent problem: the U.S. balance of payments deficit. To fight it, the Federal Reserve Board raised interest rates, the Administration pleaded for stable wages, Congress toughened the tax treatment of businessmen's foreign earnings and obliged tourists to cut back on their overseas souvenir buying. Last week the first estimates for 1964 heightened Washington's confidence that the U.S. at long last may be closing its bothersome and embarrassing deficit. Preliminary figures show that the deficit, which was $527 million in 1963's fourth...

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