The media loves to both tout and decry globalization. Tom Friedman of The New York Times calls it “a flowering or both wealth and technological innovation the likes of which the world has never before seen,” while David Korten, a well-known detractor, speaks of market tyranny...extending its reach across the planet like a cancer.” But whether pro or con, the hype about globalization is just that: hype. True, there has been a trend toward mergers, acquisitions, and increasing international trade. But international trade accounts for only 10 % of America's national income. That percentage is unlikely to grow much higher. Global companies must contend with an economic principle known as the law of diminishing returns, which states that there is an upper limit to company size beyond which complexities, inefficiencies, and breakdowns begin to hamper profitability. In banking, for instance, while mergers and acquisitions often steal the headlines. Federal Reserve researchers found that after banks reach a fairly modest size (of about $100 million in assets), there is no cost advantage to further expansion, Some evidence even suggests diseconomies of scale for very large banks. Another study, sponsored by the Financial Markets Center, found that banks lending within a limited regional area were typically twice as profitable as those with nationwide portfolios. Despite the coverage of national and global mergers, the more active trend has been toward community banks, credit unions and micro loan funds. Similar forces are at work in the rapid worldwide growth of community-supported agriculture. Farmers once received 50 cents on the dollar for agricultural products sold to consumers; in today's corporate faming, only 9 cents of every consumer dollar goes to the farmer. Marketers, who have little to do with the product itself, get 67 cents. But when farmers are in closer contact with consumers, both benefit, for consumers are able to purchase fresher, higher-quality products at reasonable prices, and farmers get a higher return on their products. If nothing else, the world is a big place, and a factor- that chips away at the bottom line is that global companies have to distribute goods over larger areas. With the price of oil having quadrupled in the last four years, shipping costs are no small consideration. Global producers often make efforts to produce specialized products to meet local tastes, but global companies compete at a disadvantage. Local operations, by being better equipped to communicate with retailers and consumers and provide timely delivery, are better suited to design and produce goods for local markets. Small companies are also able to take advantage of information technology to carry out such business functions as management, accounting, communications, and publishing, while the Internet enables small and even home-based businesses to compete against the major players. These trends do not necessarily spell doom for globalization, for it is simply not feasible to produce all goods locally. Global trades will likely remain, as it is today, a minor part of most economies.