Trump expected to announce more China tech tariffs within days


The White House isn’t just dismissing technology companies’ concernsabout tariffs on China, it’s picking up the pace. Both Reuters and the Wall Street Journal have learned that the Trump administration is likely to formally announce its latest tariffs on Chinese goods within the next few days (possibly as soon as September 17th). Imports for “internet technology products,” circuit boards and other electronics are still likely to become more expensive, although the tariff level is reportedly set at 10 percent, not the originally proposed 25 percent also used for earlier tariffs. The administration may have lowered the tariffs to reduce the chances that companies would instantly raise prices to make up for the higher costs.

If you were scrambling to buy the latest Apple Watch out of concern that Trump’s next round of tariffs could lead to price hikes, you can likely relax. Bloomberg sources have claimed that the new tariffs don’t affect a technology category that covers many of Apple’s products, including the Watch, AirPods, the HomePod and Beats headphones. This is also likely to exempt comparable products from other companies, such as Fitbit’s activity trackers and Sonos’ speakers, but the scoop only mentioned Apple’s by name.

It’s uncertain what would prompt the exception, although Apple had staunchly opposed the earlier proposal. It sent a letter to Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer warning that the tariffs could increase costs, raise prices and put it at a “disadvantage” to some foreign competitors. Apple chief Tim Cook dined with Trump in August, but it’s not certain if anything resulted from that meeting.


Personally, I would like to see equalization of trade or simply cutting down on imports from China. If that makes goods more expensive, so be it. I see no reason why we should disadvantage our own country’s workers for the sake of that corrupt, cruel regime.


I think this move is to really up the pressure and force negotiation, tech is far more influential than garments and general consumer goods.

@Ridgerunner, yes we just need to steer back towards generally balanced trade. We were generally balanced up to the early 80’s, and the economy was fine.


One should then take into account convenience and gasoline and such. I know people who will drive half way across town to Walmart for items priced a few cents cheaper. That’s the way people are taught.


I’m not a fan of Trump’s generally and I think a lot of his economic ideas are misguided or unfounded yet I am pleased he’s getting tough on Beijing; I hope this continues (rather than being just a negotiating tactic).


In reality this is simply a continuation of Obama Administration policy, though Obama’s tariffs were narrower in scope. In general, over the last decade, there has been a view in the US (and in other Western countries) that China’s steel dumping in particular has heavily disadvantaged Western steel producers. I have no problem with tariffs where the issue is clearly abusive trade tactics.

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