If the Trade War Starts to Damage the Economy, Here’s How You’ll Be Able to Tell

If the Trade War Starts to Damage the Economy, Here’s How You’ll Be Able to Tell

Early Indicators Include Executive Surveys and Futures Markets.




Many observers believe that the Trump administration’s efforts to contract the US trade deficit through tariffs imperil global commerce. While officials insist that the duties are merely a tool for leveraging concessions from trading partners, tariffs on steel, aluminum and a host of other products are beginning to affect businesses. Financial journalist Neil Irwin examines possible early warning signals of duress to the US economy should trade hostilities boil over. getAbstract recommends this timely and informative article to executives and trade experts.


President Trump’s tariffs are already making an impact on a number of US businesses. Harley-Davidson is relocating some of its manufacturing overseas to avoid “retaliatory tariffs,” while soybean farmers are feeling the financial hurt from Chinese taxes on imports. However, the higher costs that some firms and sectors face do not necessarily add up to a major threat to the US economy’s growth. And while officials can interpret broad measures such as GDP and the jobless rate to determine how the trade war is affecting the economy, delays in compiling those metrics cloud their utility. Surveys and data from ...

About the Author

Neil Irwin is a senior economics correspondent at The New York Times

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