President Trump’s recent threat to add an additional $200 billion in tariffs against Chinese imports hit the markets hard.
It has also catapulted oil price down in tandem.
Coming on the heels of already announced $50 billion in levees against steel and aluminum, along with U.S. fees on Chinese solar equipment, coined with a decision by Beijing to cut dramatically further domestic assistance to the solar industry, this is shaping up as a trade “perfect storm.”
But will anything approaching $200 billion in additional tariffs ever see the light of day?
For one thing, total Chinese imports to the U.S. only amounts to about $500 billion.
For another, the U.S. Trade Representative must be able to document specific trading abuses to justify the imposition.
Nonetheless, even if it turns out that $200 billion is unreasonably high, with much of the bravado never translating into any concrete action beyond being the latest Trump shakeup tweet, the uncertainty of White House intent moving forward is enough to chill investor sentiment.
Mark your calendar: Economic recovery will likely stop in its tracks on Aug. 1, 2018.
And you can blame what we’ll call a “gray swan event” (stick with me) that’s looming right in front of us…
This could get ugly – the retail sector could be further damaged, while consumer goods and even some of the mighty FANGs might take a beating.
What’s more, there’d be a pretty significant disruption in everyday Americans’ lives.
On top of it all, no one is talking about this correctly. Not Barron’s, not The Wall Street Journal, not Forbes, not CNBC, not FOX.
And so millions of Americans, millions of investors among them, are set to be caught completely off guard at a time when barely a month remains to prepare.