President Trump stunned world markets, Republicans and his own advisors with his decision to impose stiff tariffs on all aluminum and steel imports into the country. The market fell in reponse to this decision, while it was met with widespread criticism from labour unions, lawmakers and metalmakers alike. Amidst fears of this action causing a global trade war, Trump dubbed trade wars as ‘good’ and ‘easy to win.’
On Thursday, President Trump announced new tariffs on US steel (25%) and aluminium (10%) imports. The decision was motivated by national security concerns, as Trump feels a domestic supply of these items is necessary for the safety of the American homeland, and by a desire to protect local industries. Canada supplies the greatest amount of these goods, at 16% of US imports, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has stated that such tariffs are “absolutely unacceptable.” Canadian government officials are pushing hard for an exemption.
Meanwhile, in response to President Trump’s tariff announcement, the president of the European Commission threatened to snap back by imposing tariffs on important American exports like bourbon and blue jeans, particularly hitting exports in Republican states.
Indian billionaire and diamond mogul Nirav Modi has allegedly fled the country with his family after perpetrating fraudulent transactions worth almost $2 billion with the state-run Punjab National Bank. This scam signals a much deeper problem in the Indian banking system, where instances of loan defaults have increased, especially under the current government.
Since recent revelations of China's plan to allow the current president Xi Jinping to rule beyond the end of his next term, most economic bodies expect this to have negative consequences on the economy. Judging by his previous actions, Xi Jinping will probably continue a policy of state economic interference, potentially hindering the growth of free-markets in the country.