President Trump in October announced a “phase one” trade deal with China, but the specifics still needed hammering out. And the hammering continues. Actually, it may continue for some time.

Trump now says he’s prepared to wait until after next year’s U.S. elections before finalizing a deal with Beijing, if ever. As the president told reporters on Tuesday in London, where he is attending the NATO summit, “The China trade deal is dependent on one thing: Do I want to make it?”

Maybe Trump doesn’t. Or maybe he’s just not sure. Now there’s no doubt that Wall Street would love a pause in the U.S.-China trade war. Most bullish forecasts for next year assume just such a scenario. For example: Goldman Sachs expects economic growth to “accelerate modestly … for several reasons. First, the drag from the trade war should fade absent further escalation.” The president surely wants a buoyant stock market in 2020 along with a steady, even strengthening, economy.

But signing a deal isn’t without political risk for Trump. Media reports on its outline suggest China would agree to buy more U.S. farm goods, do more to protect U.S. intellectual property, refrain from currency manipulation, and further open …read more

Source:: The Week – Politics


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