Many people and politicians in the United States lament the trade deficit, or more precisely, the current accounts deficit. The necessary corollary to a current account deficit is a capital account surplus. If US consumers are buying more foreign goods than they are selling, foreigners must be buying more US assets than Americans are buying foreign assets. Whether or not this is a problem, there have been many attempts to "balance trade" by creating barriers to imports like tariffs or quotas. However, if the root of the problem is that US assets (like stocks in American companies and US treasuries) are attractive to foreign investors, then there is still likely to be a capital account surplus. Another approach would be to tax foreign investments and the sale of US assets to foreigners to make such investments less attractive.
Do any countries tax foreign investment to reduce current account deficits? What difficulties in such a tax might make tariffs a more attractive option?