, 14 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
A thread on where I think we are in the Trade War:

As I've been saying now for a year, Trump's tariffs - good summary below from CRS (fas.org/sgp/crs/row/R4…) - have so far been dumb, ineffective and painful (a little for everyone & a LOT for some) /1
And we now have plenty of anecdotes, business surveys AND academic research (of actual effects, not predictions) on the actual pain for importers & exporters, e.g.:

We also see (so far) no Great Trade Deals - a big (supposedly) reason for the tariffs - completed, & at this pt there's a very real chance that none of them will be anytime soon:

So this has clearly been dumb/bad policy thus far /3
THAT SAID, given the tariffs' scope, magnitude & timing, along w/ the tax cuts/etc & the overall importance of goods trade for the US economy, the tariffs have NOT been Economic Armageddon (as I've also repeatedly said:

) /4
However, Trump's NEW tariffs - 25% on "List 3" ($200B) Chinese goods & proposed List 4 ($300B) - will change the calculus. @dikenson crunches the numbers in this recent blog post: /5
Assuming List 4 happens, we'll have gone VERY quickly from
- high (25%+) tariffs on ~$90B in annual imports (washers/solar/steel/China1&2) + 10% tariffs on ~$200B (aluminum/China3)
- high (25%+) tariffs on ~$565B in annual imports + 10% tariffs on aluminum (~$17B) /6
(that is some high-dollar graphics work, I know)

That's a BIG change - essentially 25% tariffs on over one-fifth of ALL US imports (2.56T in 2018: census.gov/foreign-trade/…) /7
This would obviously hurt certain US companies (importers/exporters) and consumers, raising their taxes, messing w supply chains, etc. But what abt the US economy overall? On the one hand, it's huge ($21T), and the US is one of the less-trade-dependent major economies /8
So we see macroeconomic projections of a US-China trade war that are painful, but not devastating, eg:

Or that new Krugman column: /9
(leaving aside the long-term problems)
That said, it's safe to say that, as of 10 days ago, NO ONE was expecting this kind of escalation. So a "China Shock" (sigh) cld cause more pain than predicted, esp since the US economy might not be as strong as the topline numbers say:
And, of course, we don't yet know how China & other countries - esp those in the supply chain - will react to all of this. Or markets.

So maybe this all stays contained & the pain, while real and significant (far moreso than last year), remains manageable.

But maybe not? /11
I honestly don't know. Here's hoping cooler heads prevail and we never find out.

But I'm not holding my breath either.

Buckle up. /x
(P.s. This doesn't consider the autos tariffs, bc those appear - for now, at least - to have been (wisely) shelved pending various negotiations. Those would also be nasty.)
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Scott Lincicome
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!