A good source of business data and an explanation of the data systems used is the Census Bureau`s foreign trade statistics website, www.census.gov/eos/www/naics/. An overwhelming number of people internationally, both in developed and developing countries, support trade with other countries, but are more divided on whether they think trade creates jobs, raises wages and lowers prices.  The media belief in advanced economies is that trade increases wages, 31 percent of people think they do, compared to 27 percent who think they do. In emerging countries, 47 per cent of people think that trade increases wages, compared to 20 per cent who say it lowers wages. There is a positive correlation of 0.66 between the average GDP growth rate for the years 2014 to 2017 and the percentage of people in a given country who say that trade increases wages.  Most people, both in industrialized and emerging countries, believe that trade increases prices. 35 per cent of people in developed countries and 56 per cent in emerging countries think that trade increases prices, and 29 per cent and 18 per cent think that trade lowers prices. Those with a higher level of education are more likely to believe that trade drives down prices.  The comparative advantage theory starts in a world where trade between countries is balanced or, at the very least, where countries have a trade surplus or trade deficit, whether cyclical and temporary.  The easing of the assumption that “international trade between nations is balanced could lead a loss-making nation to import certain raw materials in which it would have a comparative advantage and which would in fact export with balanced trade,” says Dominic Salvatore.
But he doesn`t see it as a major problem, “because most trade imbalances in relation to GNP are generally not very large.”  Adam Smith then challenged this dominant thought in The Wealth of Nations, published in 1776.  Smith argued that if one nation is more efficient than another country in manufacturing a product, while the other nation is more efficient in manufacturing another product, then both nations could benefit from trade.