From an interview exchange between NPR host Scott Simon and NPR's economics correspondent John Ydstie:
SIMON: So what happens if President Trump follows through and he levies 45 percent tax on goods imported from China?RW note: Not even " limited, targeted tariffs" make any sense but all indications are that Trump is going to use a bazooka strategy when it comes to tariffs.
YDSTIE: Well, I asked that question to Doug Irwin, who's a trade expert at Dartmouth, and he says it's pretty clear from experience that China would retaliate hard.
DOUG IRWIN: They've already done that in the past when we have imposed the anti-dumping duties or special duties on some of their goods. All of a sudden, the Chinese airlines start buying Airbus instead of Boeing. They start buying Argentine soybeans instead of American soybeans. They really shift their product purchases away from the United States in response.
YDSTIE: Scott, Irwin says some limited, targeted tariffs might be successful. But if Trump uses these powers in an undisciplined way, it could spark a trade war and it could hurt the U.S. economy and the global economy.