Trump says trade talks still planned for September after China tariffs go into effect


President Donald Trump, U.S. President Donald Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin attend a working dinner with Chinese President Xi Jinping after the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina December 1, 2018. 

Kevin Lemarque | CNBC

President Donald Trump said trade talks with Beijing are still planned for September after a new round of tariffs went into effect on Sunday.

“We are talking to China, the meetings in September, that hasn’t changed,” Trump told reporters Sunday on the White House South Lawn after returning from Camp David. 

Tariffs went into effect early Sunday on $112 billion of Chinese imports. The 15% tariffs cover a wide range of consumer goods, including everything from certain types of clothing and shoes to some consumer electronics like cameras and desktop computers.

Beijing has started to impose retaliatory tariffs on some of the U.S. goods on its $75 billion target list.

Another round of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports is set to go into effect Dec. 15. The goods targeted for that round include laptops and smartphones. In total, U.S. tariffs on Sept. 1 and Dec. 15 will hit $300 billion of Chinese imports.

The new tariffs could cost the average American household $1,000 a year, according to a J.P. Morgan estimate. More than 160 industry groups have written the president to voice their opposition to the tariffs. 

Trump has slammed companies that oppose his trade policy as “badly run and weak,” saying they were using tariffs as an excuse for bad management.  

Wall Street had a volatile August after Trump announced his plan to slap tariffs on Chinese imports. The S&P 500 posted 11 moves of more than 1% in 22 trading sessions for August. Those moves included three declines of at least 2.6% as well as the index’s worst day of the year on Aug. 5.

Investors are also increasingly concerned about an economic downturn after the bond market flashed a recession signal in August known as a yield curve inversion. That is when the yield on the 10-year Treasury note falls below the 2-year rate as investors dump stocks and pile into long-term U.S. debt, which is viewed as a safehaven. 

— CNBC’s Yun Li and Fred Imbert contributed to this report


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