Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Trump Appoints the Hawk

Forbes reports on the current state of economic play between China and the U.S., in anticipation of the Trump administration's less-friendly approach to trade. It could be a good time to short (or dump) the stocks of firms which have made major investments in China.
Trump’s Transition Team announced the creation of the National Trade Council. Peter Navarro, a University of California, Irvine economist, was picked to head up the new body.

Navarro, whose formal title will be Assistant to the President and Director of Trade and Industrial Policy, is being charged with developing a national plan to rebuild American industry.

“For the first time,” the Transition Team press release states, “there will be a council within the White House that puts American manufacturing and American workers first, and that thinks strategically about the health of America’s defense industrial base and the role of trade and manufacturing in national security.”

Navarro is not a hawk. He is the hawk, America’s pre-eminent China skeptic. Author of Death by China, the 67-year-old has led the charge against Chinese mercantilism and predation.

Trump did not win on November 8 because he had the support of GM’s Mary Barra, Apple’s Tim Cook, or Boeing’s Dennis Muilenburg. He won because he promised to bring industry back to America and thereby got the votes of blue-collar America.

If Beijing continues to pressure American companies, Trump won’t feel the heat from executive suites. In fact, he will revel in the distress of CEOs—and he will get a boost as they have one more reason to leave China and return to the U.S.
Sounds like Forbes is looking forward to a more muscular policy toward China trade. If you enjoy buying manufactured items cheaply - clothing and electronics - you might want to stock up in the next few months before the prices go up.