By  on February 1, 2005

NEW YORK — The growing debate over the almost $150 billion U.S. trade deficit with China has domestic manufacturers, lobbyists and two U.S. senators focusing on that country’s fixed currency exchange rate, which they maintain artificially lowers the price of Chinese goods by as much as 40 percent.

China’s exports to the U.S. have shot up 75 percent since that nation joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, prompting calls for the Bush administration to take a tougher stance.

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