Here Are 14 Charts FedEx CEO Fred Smith Watches When He Thinks About The US Economy

fred smith fedexFrederick Smith, Chairman and CEO of FedEx Corporation, listens to remarks at a news conference held by members of the Energy Security Leadership Council in Washington in December 13, 2006.

FedEx ships  goods all over the world.

As such, economists follow the company closely as it is considered to be one of the most reliable bellwethers of global economic activity.

FedEx CEO Fred Smith gave a brief presentation this week to the Committee for Economic Development titled “Restoring America’s Economic Growth.”

In it, he presented 14 economic charts that he considered important to understanding what’s going on.

He expressed particular concern over persistent unemployment amid slow growth. 

“Lack of investment, the U.S. dependence on foreign petroleum, and finally the inability to engage in a more productive trade relationship are at the heart of low growth rates,” said Smith.

Smith favours corporate tax reform that would encourage business investment, which he demonstrates, is tightly correlated to job creation.

Perhaps we over invested in the early '90s in businesses for which there was no market.

This is an exclamation mark on the fact that there is a lack of public construction.

The central part of an industrial society is energy. The recent surge in prices is due to demand in the emerging world.

The good news is the U.S. is producing a lot more fuel thanks to the shale fracking boom.

Thanks to domestic supply, we're importing far less oil.

A huge part of our trade deficit is due to oil imports.

But the oil trade deficit is shrinking.

China is growing, but we continue to import far more than we export.

We also import far more from Japan than we export.

'If there were one thing that could be done that would change the circumstance more than anything else, it could be done with a stroke of a pen. It would be to change to corporate tax code. Because at the end of the day, capital investment in equipment and software -- there's an almost 100% relationship between capital expenditures and job creation. It is punitive, it punishes equity investment, it punishes capital investment. It encourages leverage and speculation, private equity, and the maintenance of trillion of dollars overseas.'

Smith believes 25% would be a more appropriate corporate tax rate.

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