For well over two decades after the end of World War II the international trade of the United States was primarily viewed by Americans as a one-way street synonymous with rapidly expanding markets abroad for U.S. goods and services and the rapid acquisition of foreign assets by U.S. investors. Critics called it economic imperialism. By the late 1960s a hint of change was in the wind. Import growth began to exceed export growth. The rate of increase in foreign direct investment in the United States outpaced that of U.S. direct investment abroad. By the late 1970s the growing presence of foreign goods and services and foreign investment on U.S. shores was beginning to force a reassessment of the U.S. place in the international economy.