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Trump goes nuclear in trade war after Beijing starts stacking tariffs

Was the President’s ‘blink’ on tariffs just weeks ago the impetus for this latest Chinese aggression?

So much for waiting until 2020.

Over the course of the last few months, China’s willingness to engage with the United States regarding trade has dwindled to nearly nothing.  The belief among observers was that Beijing was going to simply “run out the clock” on Trump, believing that his 2020 reelection efforts would be futile, and that a democratic President would be much easier to manipulate.  (They may have gotten half of that right).

Then, seemingly out of nowhere, China slaps the US with massive tariffs today, reinvigorating the ferocious war of words between Beijing and Washington DC.

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President Trump, not one to back down, has issued a vociferous and rigorous set of statements in retaliation.

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President Donald Trump said on Friday he was ordering U.S. companies to look at ways to close their operations in China and make more of their products in the United States instead, a rhetorical strike at Beijing as trade tensions mounted.

Trump cannot legally compel U.S. companies to abandon China immediately and he gave no detail on how he might proceed with any such order, although he said he would be offering a response later on Friday to tariffs on American products announced by China earlier in the day.

The U.S. dollar rose sharply against the Chinese yuan, U.S. stock markets fell and oil prices dropped on Trump’s latest salvo against China. “Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies HOME and making your products in the USA,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “We don’t need China and, frankly, would be far better off without them.”

This escalation by the Chinese comes just days after a so-called “blink” by President Trump, with the White House announcing a delay in tariffs against Beijing that could have potentially affected the all-important economic impact of the holiday season.

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