Trump warns he could do ‘a lot more’ on China trade

Screen Shot 2018 10 10

The second round of tariffs that the Trump administration imposed on China came into effect only on September 24, so the increase in exports last month might have been the result of Chinese companies rushing to sell their products before the additional duties were added.

In its report on Friday, Moody's said that the latest tranche of USA tariffs implemented last month on some US$200 billion of goods will be "credit negative" for Chinese sectors related to commodities and component manufacturing.

The U.S. Treasury Department's staff has advised Secretary Steven Mnuchin that China isn't manipulating the yuan as the Trump administration prepares to issue a closely watched report on foreign currencies, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Now Mike Pence, the vice-president, has raised the stakes with a ferocious broadside against Beijing, accusing it of engaging in a military, economic and political campaign to...

China's surplus with the United States widened to a record $34.1 billion in September as exports to the American market rose 13 per cent from a year earlier to $46.7 billion, down slightly from August's 13.4 per cent growth.

"If the USA sold four Ford-class aircraft carriers priced at $15bn (£11.4bn) each, it would easily make up for the $60bn trade deficit with China", said the editorial in The People's Daily, a Chinese state media outlet and Communist party mouthpiece.

The yuan has lost almost 10 percent of its value against the US dollar this year. That prompted suggestions Beijing might weaken the exchange rate to help exporters.

If the U.S. -China relationship could be rebalanced, Mnuchin told Reuters their total annual trade relationship could grow to $1 trillion from $650 billion now, with $500 billion of exports from each country.

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China's overall export growth accelerated, temporarily defying forecasts of a slowdown as the global economy and consumer demand cool.

These include a high bilateral trade surplus with the United States, a global current account surplus above three percent of gross domestic product and "persistent" one-way currency market intervention to weaken or prevent a rise in a country's currency.

Although economists expect the American tariffs to eventually have an impact, the trade statistics reinforce the widely-held notion here that there will be no quick end to the trade war between Washington and Beijing. Chinese leaders scrapped that deal after Trump's first tariff hikes hit.

US nuclear exports to China amounted to $170 million in 2017, the officials said.

"Prospects for significant progress toward de-escalation of their trade conflict are low in the short term", said Kuijs. "We've made it clear that if they have real action items that they want to discuss that we will listen".

With global growth cooling and US threats of more tariff hikes, "the recent resilience of exports is unlikely to be sustained", said Evans-Pritchard.

Chinese exports to the USA also rose by 14 percent while Chinese imports from America dropped 1.2 percent.

In a separate report, the Department of Labor said the prices of goods imported from China fell 0.1 percent in September, the third month in a row of falling prices.

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