Charting the US-China trade battle

Chinese factory claims it's making Trump's 2020 campaign flags amid trade war talk

President Trump has held dozens of rallies across the country while in office

Soybean prices continued to dive this week and on Friday the Trump administration imposed additional tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese goods followed by China imposing a similar 25 percent tariff on 545 USA products - including soybeans - also worth $34 billion.

With additional tariffs on Chinese products worth US$34 billion made effective on Friday, the United States has taken a risky step that will take a toll on its own economy.

"I think it's true to say that a lot of the pessimism has already been factored in over the past couple of weeks, with share prices gradually going down as the realisation has set in that apart from being a war of words, this does now seem to be a trade war", he added. A trade war could disrupt these flows and even shift the location of the final manufacture, to avoid penal tariffs in the export destination.

The government-run English language China Daily newspaper said: "The Trump administration is behaving like a gang of hoodlums with its shakedown of other countries, particularly China".

"The real question is, how long do we stay in the trade war?" said Mr Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in NY.

"Around 59 percent of products worth US$34 billion subject to additional tariffs are made by foreign firms in China, with American firms making up a considerable part", Gao said.

Some of Trump's fellow Republicans in the US Congress lashed out at his actions.

The president's tariffs, the PIIE's researchers conclude, are "a prime example of 20th century tools aimed at the knowledge-embodying trade flows of the 21st century". Trump has initiated the silent war to rectify the snowballing USA trade deficit with China, which hit a record $375.2 billion a year ago. He told CNBC that there may be no way to escape a trade war with China.

The report, which shows that unemployment has dropped, also included some numbers that might not be worth the all-caps tweet, including slowed hiring in small businesses and a lack of qualified applicants in some fields, owing, possibly, to wage stagnation.

Many caught in the initial line of fire - USA farmers absorbing tariffs on their exports to China, for instance - are fearful. MITA asked that imaging technology be excluded from the final list of products being slapped with tariffs - but to no avail.

Peterson pointed out that so-called red states have 3.9 million jobs linked to foreign trade, far more than the 2.5 million in blue states.

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Burgundy Lion co-owner Paul Desbaillets wouldn't give exact figures, but said English fans have been fairly thirsty, and not just for a win.

Donald Trump's trade war could potentially drag in products from other American trade partners, undermining relations.

"China would never start a trade war but if any party resorts to an increase of tariffs then China will take measures in response to protect development interests".

In a further move to escalate tensions between the world's two largest economies, U.S. President Donald Trump said Washington could ultimately raise tariffs on more than $500 billion in Chinese products - almost the total value of U.S. imports from the country past year. In other words, the United States and China are likely to impose penal tariffs on their entire imports from each other.

The agency said yesterday that tariffs on U.S. products will take effect immediately after United States tariffs on Chinese goods kick in. There also have been indications that trade negotiations with the European Union have been working, which may result in more USA auto sales to Europe, a big boost to US manufacturing.

"After the United States activated its tariff measures against China, China's measures against the United States took effect immediately", said Lu Kang, a foreign ministry spokesman.

China has accused the United States of "opening fire" on the world with tariffs that took effect Friday, warning that it would respond the moment that duties on $34 billion in its products kick in.

Trump imposed tariffs of 25 percent on steel imports and 10 percent on imported aluminum from several countries.

So while the tariffs may not result in an immediate price hike at the checkout line, many industry groups warn that Americans will still see changes.

Beijing had earlier released a target list of $34bn worth of imported USA goods including autos and agricultural products also faced 25 percent tariffs.

"You saw with China, 50 billion dollars - and another 200 billion dollars, frankly, is waiting. In the most extreme case China could undermine the ability of the Trump administration to conclude a nuclear deal with North Korea", Peterson added.

When it comes to China, Trump believes Beijing is using "unfair" trade practices to gain an advantage on the U.S., including lax observation of intellectual property law.

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