With trade tensions rising, so is the pushback in the USA from private business that see potentially devastating ramifications, not only from China, but from Europe, Canada, and other countries in Asia. China has so far met USA tariffs with equal retaliatory tariffs, but with only $130 billion in US goods exported to China, it's not possible for President Xi Jinping it to match tariffs on a half-trillion dollars of products.
Trump has always been a fan of tough action on trade.
Higher rates, however, strengthen the dollar against the world's currencies, which makes the United States a more expensive - and potentially less attractive - place to invest.
Given the president's decades-long history of protectionist statements and direct signals on the campaign trail, the recent spate of trade restrictions should come as no surprise.
US President Donald Trump has heaped more pressure on the European Union, after tweeting that they are "manipulating their currencies". I don't necessarily agree with it because he's raising interest rates, I'm not saying I agree with it, and I don't necessarily agree with it, I must tell you I don't. These duties are collected by Customs and Border Protection at the good's port of entry.
Washington also is now targeting another $200 billion in imports which see fresh tariffs imposed as soon as September. Here's a breakdown of how Trump's trade fight is starting to take its toll. That's "pretty unusual", says The Guardian, and "high risk" due to the Fed's supposed independence from political influence.
"And it is worth pondering whether this is a President who is going to break with 25-30 years of tradition in not interfering in Fed policy deliberations going forward". So somebody would so 'oh, maybe you shouldn't say that as a president.' I couldn't care less what they say, because my views haven't changed. In particular, the Fed's most recent rate hikes could dilute some of the benefit of the tax cuts Trump signed into law past year.
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The economy has continued to grow since Trump took office, with unemployment rates down, growth rising and the stock market up - though it closed down about 135 points on Thursday.
In a pair of tweets, Trump said China, the European Union and others had been "manipulating their currencies and interest rates lower" while the USA dollar strengthened, eroding "our big competitive edge". "We are being taken advantage of and I don't like it".
Powell added that "no one in the administration has said anything to me that really gives me concern on this front".
The U.S. central bank has hiked rates twice this year and most experts expect two more increases by year's end.
The White House on Thursday attempted to ensure markets that the Fed maintains its independence after the CNBC interview was aired.
A prolonged trade war would likely trump FED monetary policy so, while traditionally independent central bank policy is the ultimate driver, Trump has found a way in to deliver on his promise of a weak Dollar.