Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Trump, tariffs and trade wars: Be careful what you wish for

Reported in The Memo: Trump tariff move may pay dividends in 2020.  (The Hill, 3/5/2018)

Headline from Wisconsin State Journal, 3/3/2018
Walker’s office said the tariffs could affect “multiple sectors and industries” in Wisconsin, including MillerCoors, Harley-Davidson, Neenah-based packaging manufacturer Bemis and Seneca Foods, a food processor and distributor with nine plants in the state. 
Trump’s plan could have the unintended effect of encouraging manufacturers to move their operations out of the U.S. to avoid the tariffs, Walker said.

Related reading:
Trump’s Tariff Plan Leaves Blue-Collar Winners and Losers.  (The New York Times, 3/3/2018)
But putting America first may not put all American workers ahead.  
“There are more losers than winners,” said Monica de Bolle, an economist at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. “If the point is to protect American jobs, if the point is to protect small and medium-sized businesses, this is exactly the wrong way to do things.”   [emphasis added]
The mills and smelters that supply the raw material, and that would directly benefit from the tariffs, have been shrinking for years. Today, those industries employ fewer than 200,000 people. The companies that buy steel and aluminum, to make everything from trucks to chicken coops, employ more than 6.5 million workers, according to a Heritage Foundation analysis of Commerce Department data.

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