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Regulation Costs US Economy Big Bucks

THE US economy loses a trillion dollars annually because of lower productivity due to massive regulation, a recent study reports.

The US gross domestic product (GDP) - the output of goods and services - today might have been 20 percent higher if the regulatory buildup since the beginning of the Johnson administration had not occurred, says economist Richard Vedder, at the Center for the Study of American Business at Washington University in St. Louis.

If regulatory activity remained at 1963 levels, his analysis shows that the 1993 GDP would have been about $7.6 trillion instead of $6.3 trillion.

Regulation imposes direct costs on businesses, Mr. Vedder states. But it also imposes larger, long-term indirect costs in the form of reduced productivity growth, which averages about 1 percent a year instead of the 2 percent growth the economy should sustain absent the regulation buildup.

- Staff

Taiwan markets look up

TAIWAN'S sagging financial markets should rebound on renewed public confidence after the landslide election Saturday of President Lee Teng-hui, analysts say. Taiwan had to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to prop up its currency and stock prices since China began war games two weeks ago in an attempt to intimidate voters.

- Associated Press

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