Saturday, February 11, 2017

Trump About to Interfere in International Trade

Oh boy.

President Donald Trump vowed Friday that the currencies of the U.S., China and Japan would soon be on "a level playing field," a day after a phone call with China’s president, Xi Jinping.

Trump did not explain how the three countries would reach a level playing field, or what he meant by the phrase.

Expect some kind of macro interference in trade and currencies.

Trump has no appreciation of how international trade or free markets work.


(via Bloomberg)


  1. There is already interference. So Trump is talking about a different type of interference to the extant interference.

  2. what free markets?! you're smoking some good dope these days, Robert. Bloody lunatic.

  3. He said in a press conference during Abe's visit that he wants bilateral trade with Japan that is "free, fair and reciprocal." He also accepted Abe's invitation to visit Japan later this year.

    Not sure why this is negative but TPP is positive. TPP is weak on trade anyway. Tariff and quota reductions over a 20 year term? WTF is that about?

    Here's the Daily TPP Flush:

    "TPP requires countries, through strong, enforceable provisions, to:

    Protect the freedom to form unions and bargain collectively;
    Prohibit and eliminate exploitative child labor and forced labor;
    Protect against employment discrimination;
    Set acceptable conditions of work concerning minimum wages, hours of work, and workplace health and safety;
    Prevent degradation of labor protections in export processing zones— designated areas that often have lax labor rules in other countries, allowing them to compete unfairly; and
    Combat trade in goods made by forced labor, including forced child labor, in countries inside and outside TPP.
    TPP also establishes specific labor reforms that Vietnam, Malaysia, and Brunei must undertake to meet their TPP obligations. The United States will not bring TPP into force with these countries if the reforms are not made. And we will not hesitate to take action against any countries that fail to live up to their obligations in the labor chapter, including through trade sanctions."

  4. “Lord Keynes” seems to love Trump: Peter Navarro sounds Eminently Sensible to Me

    Peter Navarro seems to have become a major economic adviser to Trump. He’s clearly a smart guy and, unlike hordes of delusional economists, Navarro understands the threat to the Western world from the aggressive mercantilism of China.

    And what he says here is so great it is music to the ears:

    In fact, generally speaking, everything he says here is in line with what a Post Keynesian would advocate as a trade and industrial policy for America (even if there might be disagreements on precisely how to do it).

    If only Trump can implement this protectionist industrial policy properly, it will be fantastic for America.

    But when this all goes south, “the unregulated free market” will get the blame. Bet on it.