A Trade Update

We all have heard or read or watched the game being played with international trade…….BAM!  Trump has levied tariffs on international steel ans aluminum….and then the president goes to the G7 and blows up everything…..

First floated the idea of scrapping all tariffs……

President Trump reportedly asked world leaders at the Group of Seven Summit on Friday to consider “no tariffs” at all amid growing tensions over the administration’s trade moves.

Politico, citing officials who listened and took notes of the discussions, reported that Trump told assembled world leaders that “we should at least consider no tariffs, no barriers — scrapping all of it.”

(thehill.com)

Did I miss something?

After saying that nugget……Trump threatens to end ALL trade……

Leaving the G7 summit on Saturday, President Trump said that the U.S. might end all trade with America’s closest allies if those countries don’t submit to his demands over reduced trade barriers. Trump also confirmed that he had told the leaders of Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Canada, and Italy that there should be no tariffs between them and the U.S. of any kind. Whether Trump’s characteristically hyperbolic threat, or overarching proposal, will be taken seriously is another matter.

Referring to what he called “ridiculous and unfair” tariffs on U.S. imports, Trump said, “It’s going to stop — or we’ll stop trading with them. And that’s a very profitable answer, if we have to do it.”

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2018/06/trump-threatens-to-end-all-trade-with-allies.html

Okay what part of any of that sounds like something that would be taught at the Wharton school?

Why did he waste time pissing everybody off?

BTW just a reminder where the trade goes here in the US….

Then there was some good news (at least for me)….

Before I begin let me say…..my more Right leaning brethren have accused me of hating our president, Donald J. Trump.  They are mistaken I may dislike the man but I hate very few people.

With that said there are a few policies that Trump espoused that I could agree with….some of his campaign thoughts on war and foreign policy and a few domestic things…the problem is that when he became president he back peddled on the ones I liked….that fed my dislike.

Everyone knows about the trade war that Trump is about to start with the rest of the world, right?  Well he has made a statement that I fully agree with….he has said that he wants to ban German luxury cars.

President Donald Trump is hoping to effectively ban sales of Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and other German cars, according to reports from a German magazine.

A report in WirtschaftsWoche cites unnamed diplomatic sources who say Trump told French president Emmanuel Macron he would maintain his trade policy “until no Mercedes models rolled on Fifth Avenue in New York.” The trade policy would seemingly affect any German automaker, though, putting sales of Porsche and Volkswagen (and its Audi luxury division) at risk as well as Daimler.

Trump has long held a hardline position toward German automakers. Last January, he underscored this in comments that appeared in the German magazine Bild.

“When you walk down Fifth Avenue, everybody has a Mercedes-Benz parked in front of his house,” Trump said, according to a Wall Street Journal translation of the comments. “You were very unfair to the U.S.A. It isn’t mutual. How many Chevrolets do you see in Germany? Not many, maybe none, you don’t see anything at all over there. It’s a one-way street.”

(yahoo news)

This will not sit well with the pretentious twats that own one of these cars….I say let these self-centered slugs buy American.

Since I am an Italian sports car enthusiast, Ferrari, Maserati, Alfas I cannot disagree or fault Trump for his vendetta against the Germans.

Let me leave you with a small joke…..

What is the difference between a porcupine and a BMW?

A porcupine has all the PRICKS on the outside.

(rim shot)

Not to worry if you are wealthy enough for one of their pieces of scrap metal then you will find a way around the ban…..they always do.  Their money will buy lots of privilege.

More bad news about these new tariffs….economist say that the dollars saved by people because of the tax cuts will be taken away because of increase in prices…….

Your trade moment is done….I return you to your regular reading habits….

Be well, be safe…..chuq

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War Has Begun (Trade That Is)

First, Trump aimed his trade policies at China and their steel industry….there was some back and forth and a bit of a back step and then it raised its head again…..

The delay is over. The Trump administration is announcing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the European Union, Canada, and Mexico, in a move sure to raise worries of a trade war. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says there will be a 25% tariff on imported steel and a 10% tariff on imported aluminum, reports the AP. President Trump announced the tariffs in March but the US granted exemptions to the EU, Canada, Mexico, and other US allies. Ross says talks with Canada and Mexico over the North American Free Trade Agreement are “taking longer than we had hoped.” He says negotiations with Europe have “made some progress” but not enough to merit an exemption.

Ahead of Thursday’s move, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the 28-nation bloc would respond “in an intelligent, decisive, and joint way” after making plain to Washington its view that the tariffs are incompatible with World Trade Organization rules. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said “protectionism and isolation against free trade mustn’t regain the upper hand,” while French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire called the tariffs “unjustified, unjustifiable, and dangerous,” noting a trade war would hurt growth everywhere. Also in advance of Ross’ announcement, Global News reported Canada had drawn up a list of possible US targets to hit in response

Let’s begin…..Mexico has answered the tariffs……

The government of Mexico announced on Thursday it would implement new duties on various U.S. products in response to President Trump‘s decision to levy steel and aluminum tariffs on the country.

“Mexico reiterates its position against protectionist measures that affect and distort international commerce in goods,” the government said in a statement.

“In response to the tariffs imposed by the United States, Mexico will impose equivalent measures to various products like flat steels (hot and cold foil, including coated and various tubes), lamps, legs and shoulders of pork, sausages and food preparations, apples, grapes, blueberries, various cheeses, among others, up to an amount comparable to the level of affectation.”

(thehill.com)

Some analysts say that this move will cost Americans jobs……as many as 2 million possible…..plus the cost of anything in an aluminum package will be more expensive……some food items will go up….and lumber….making new homes more expensive….just to mention a few of the sectors that could be effected.

Closing Thought–31May18

The one country that gets our aid without question is Israel and those funds were to be spent on American made equipment so Israel gets out taxpayers funds and spent in American to enrich the M-IC……but it seems that Israel wants to change this program…..

As the record-large 10-year US military aid package to Israel is set to go into effect, Israeli MPs are lobbying the Trump government to make substantial changes. In particular, they object to the made-in-USA rules.

The $38 billion aid package is to be spent on US-made equipment. This has been a common way to make foreign aid politically safe, as it means that money is ultimately going to US arms makers who have a lot of influence.

Israeli officials, however, see this US armament as a problem for their economy. The Israeli Knesset Finance Committee is estimating that 22,000 Israeli jobs would be lost if the US doesn’t just send Israel the money straightaway and let them spending on Israeli-made arms.

Yet this was the agreement all along, back to when President Obama got the Israeli government to finally, grudgingly agree to accept $38 billion worth of equipment. While President Trump has suggested the aid couple end up being even bigger, as part of a desire to throw more arms at Israel, the desire to keep growing US weapons exports means he’s probably not going to be eager to send Israel the cash instead.

(antiwar.com)

I do not like the idea of my tax dollars being sent to the thugs in Israel…but since I have no say in where the money goes I’ll just say “Screw Israel”…..you do not like the way things are done then we will keep our cash and they can go f*ck themselves….put that in your matza ball and shove it!

Peace Out…..chuq

The War Of Words

It seems they is all we have going on in this country these days…all the he said, he said…..the silly back and forth while this country slides into yet another abyss…..the trade war is the newest “art of the deal”…….the bluster is good but is any of it true?

President Trump on Monday made the case that his White House is righting years of wrong in regard to China. Beijing “has agreed to buy massive amounts of ADDITIONAL Farm/Agricultural Products – would be one of the best things to happen to our farmers in many years!” he wrote. “On China, Barriers and Tariffs to come down for first time,” went another. And a third took aim at Democrats. “I ask Senator Chuck Schumer, why didn’t President Obama & the Democrats do something about Trade with China, including Theft of Intellectual Property etc.? They did NOTHING! With that being said, Chuck & I have long agreed on this issue! Fair Trade, plus, with China will happen!” The tweets follow days of negotiations between the two nations, though even some of Trump’s supporters are worried that China is getting the upper hand. Details:

  • Dueling statements: Treasury chief Steven Mnuchin said Sunday that the US was “putting the trade war on hold” and ditching the idea of tariffs while talks continue. However, Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer made a point to say that tariffs were still an important tool to “protect our technology.” The Wall Street Journal sees these as “markedly different positions,” adding that the statements punctuate days of negotiations “with a question mark.”
  • China winning? An analysis by Heather Long at the Washington Postasserts that China is winning the trade fight, at least so far. The White House, for example, has been demanding that China reduce the United States’ trade deficit with Beijing by at least $200 billion, but no such specifics were evident in a “noticeably vague” joint statement issued by the nations over the weekend. Also, China may have agreed to buy more US energy and farm products, “but it was almost certain that the Chinese were going to buy more of that stuff anyway.”
  • Criticism: Business Insider rounds up criticism of the weekend developments from Trump allies including Lou Dobbs of Fox Business (“US must export like a superpower not an agrarian developing nation half our size!” he wrote) and former steel industry CEO Dan DiMicco (“Did #President just blink?” he wrote. “China & friends appear 2 be carrying the day.”) Meanwhile, Marco Rubio states flatly that China “is winning the negotiations.”
  • What’s next: With the trade war “on hold,” CNNMoney looks at the big questions still to be answered in ongoing talks, including whether Beijing will seriously address US allegations of technology theft.
  • Biggest threat? A post at Axios argues that China is “thinking long term” with a global strategy, unlike the US. “China is pouring time, money, infrastructure and trade into every continent, after promising to fill the global void created by Trump’s America First,” writes Jim VandeHei, who also faults Congress for having short-term vision. Xi Jinping is positioning China to dominate most of the world’s important industries in the decade to come.

So the “art of the deal” is put on hold while the words continue to fly……is this something learned in the Wharton School?

It’s Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!

Making America Great Again!  Apparently we do this by helping China’s ZTE corporation……wait for the WTF!

Remember all those jobs that the president said would come flowing back to the shores of America? 1.7 million jobs created in 2017…..compared to 2.2 million created in 2016….I feel confident that we will have a new day in this country any time now.

Trump is planning to save jobs in China….you heard me….CHINA…..that is the nation of China not China, New Mexico….

President Trump surprised the business world Sunday by saying Washington would help keep the Chinese telecommunications giant ZTE alive—right after US sanctions had crippled it, the New York Times reports. “President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast,” tweeted Trump. “Too many jobs in China lost. Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done!” The Commerce Department last month imposed a seven-year ban on US companies shipping technology to ZTE, saying it had allowed workers to disregard US trade controls on North Korea and Iran.

Then ZTE, which has 70,000 workers across 160 countries, announced Wednesday that it was stopping “major operating activities.” So, what’s up? “Given his pressure on Beijing on trade, I don’t understand concern for Chinese jobs,” says technology and security expert Adam Segal. In fact, many analysts are “initially scratching their heads,” the Times says, while the Wall Street Journal calls Trump’s about-face “extraordinary.” Reuters notes that US suppliers like Intel and Qualcomm will likely suffer “a significant impact” from the Commerce Department ban. American companies are said to supply 25% to 30% of components used by ZTE, which makes smartphones and gear for telecom networks.

So Trump is going to help save jobs for a Chinese company…that ought to give all those workers that lost their jobs when Harley-Davidson closed their plant to move to Thailand so much confidence and a warm feeling while they try to get some unemployment hopefully they will not suffer the insult of being called a freeloader for needing help.

Also keep in mind that ZTE is one of the companies that has software to make a security breech easy……we will help save jobs and help make security violations so much easier.

That should “Make America Great Again”.

TPP Will Not Go Quietly

2016 the promise was to pull out of the TPP because it was NO GOOD for the country and NAFTA would be re-negotiated….promises by then candidate Donny Trump…..

So far NAFTA remains in its original form and the US has pulled out of the TPP in 2017…..but wait there is more news on the TPP front…….

President Donald Trump has asked trade officials to explore the possibility of the United States rejoining negotiations on the Pacific Rim agreement after he pulled out last year as part of his “America first” agenda, the AP reports. Farm-state lawmakers said Thursday after a White House meeting with Trump that he had given that assignment to his trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, and his new chief economic adviser, Larry Kudlow. The Trans-Pacific Partnership would open more overseas markets for American farmers. “I’m sure there are lots of particulars that they’d want to negotiate, but the president multiple times reaffirmed in general to all of us and looked right at Larry Kudlow and said, ‘Larry, go get it done,'” said Sen. Ben Sasse. Eleven countries signed the agreement last month.

Trump’s rejection of the deal has rattled allies and raised questions at home about whether protectionism will impede US economic growth. Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, the chairman of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee, said he was “very impressed” that Trump had assigned Kudlow and Lighthizer “the task to see if we couldn’t take another look at TPP. And that certainly would be good news all throughout farm country.” The discussions came during a meeting in which Trump told farm-state governors and lawmakers that he was pressing China to treat the American agriculture industry fairly. Midwest farmers fear becoming caught up in a trade war as Beijing threatens to impose tariffs on soybeans and other US crops, a big blow to Midwestern farmers, many of whom are strong Trump supporters.

Is the possibility of re-joining TPP a by-product of the new tariffs that the president thinks will make America Great Again?

Trade Wars Cometh

Just last month Pres. Trump let it be known that he would enforce tariffs on steel and aluminum……the first shots were fired in the new trade wars…..these will effect Americans in several ways….cost of cars and even their addictive sodas…..but what will Asia do in response?

The Bangkok Post had an op-ed on this situation……

Over the past five decades or so, Asia’s economies have relied largely on an export-oriented development model to support rapid economic transformation and growth. But with US President Donald Trump fulfilling…

In the past year, Mr Trump has withdrawn the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), renegotiated its free-trade agreement with South Korea, and raised “safeguard” tariffs on imported washing machines…

https://www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opinion/1439051/how-asia-can-tackle-us-trade-wars

China has made it official that it will respond…it has notified the WTO of its intentions…..

The notification came in a WTO document that was dated last Thursday but posted only after the Easter public holidays.

It came after China said late on Sunday that it has increased tariffs by up to 25 per cent on 128 US products, escalating a dispute between the world’s biggest economies.

China has now fulfilled its legal duty to notify the WTO and other member states of its retaliatory measures.

http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/2140113/china-will-give-good-it-gets-trade-war-united-states

The great Trade Wars of the 21st Century have begun….

This is the warning shot of the end of the “Pax Americana” (a bit melodramatic)…..do not know what that means then stay tuned for I will cover the “Pax” in an upcoming post.