The New York Times is reporting that former President Donald Trump is planning to reignite trade wars with foreign nations if he’s reelected next year in a move the paper describes as “a high-stakes gamble with the economy’s health.”
While Trump levied tariffs on foreign competitors in his first term, the Times reports that a second term would see that effort go into overdrive with the goal of severing the economic relationship between the United States and China.
“Essentially, Mr. Trump’s trade agenda aims at backing the United States away from integration with the global economy and steering the country toward becoming more self-contained: producing a larger share of what it consumes and wielding its might through one-on-one dealings with other countries,” the Times reports. “If he is elected, he plans a more audacious intervention in hopes of eliminating the trade deficit and bolstering manufacturing — with potentially seismic consequences for jobs, prices, diplomatic relations and the global trading system.”
Daniel M. Price, a former economics adviser for President George W. Bush, told the Times that such plans were “erratic and irrational” and he warned that longtime American allies such as Japan and South Korea would not be shy about whacking America with stiff tariffs should Trump target them in a second term.
Trump has floated a sweeping 10 percent tariff on all imported goods in his second term, which trade experts warn could jack up prices and reignite inflation just as it has cooled from earlier highs.