Unlike previous tariffs, these will have a direct impact on “final goods,” including shoes and clothing, and could hit American household costs this fall. Additional tariffs on consumer goods are set to include toys and sports equipment on Dec. 15 — right in time for holiday shopping.
“Trump’s newest tariffs are bad news, but don’t expect consumers to start seeing the result of higher prices today,” said Chad Bown from the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, according to the Financial Times. “It will take a bit of time for the more expensive clothes and shoes now being unloaded at the ports to make it on to store shelves and into online retailers’ warehouses.”
A recent survey by the University of Michigan showed a drop in consumer confidence in August to its lowest level since Trump was elected. One in three respondents mentioned tariffs as a reason for concern.
Pat Toomey, a senator from Pennsylvania, said in a recent interview that he hopes that the tariffs will play a larger role in protecting U.S. companies operating in China.
“If we get the Chinese to change their behavior in a meaningful way in that area, and then drop the tariffs, then we will have ended up in a better place,” he said. “In the meantime, we’re doing damage. It’s a double-edged sword.”
Trump reassured reporters that his administration is still negotiating, adding “we can’t allow China to rip us off anymore.”
But Chinese’s official Xinhua news agency hit back: “The United States should learn how to behave like a responsible global power and stop acting as a ‘school bully.’ As the world’s only superpower, it needs to shoulder its due responsibility, and join other countries in making this world a better and more prosperous place. Only then can America become great again.”