The bells of recession are sounding up and down Wall Street today as yields on the 10-year Treasury note briefly dipped below two-year yields for the first time since 2007, a warning sign that of recession, according to the Wall Street Journal.
President Trump isn't paying attention to those warning chimes.
He spent a good chunk of today’s Twitter time defending his tariffs on China and promoting his rally tomorrow in Manchester, NH. Free tickets are available.
Trump tweeted that the $300B in tariffs that he imposed on China hasn’t hurt the economy and “really hasn’t led to any kind of serious rise in prices at the consumer level.”
The tweet contradicts Trump’s move yesterday to delay new tariffs on China-made toys, cellphones and laptop computers until after the start of the Christmas season.
Apparently not eager to play the role of Scrooge, Trump told reporters he delayed those tariffs “just in case they might have an impact on people.”
Say what? That admission must be an eye-opener to diehard MAGA fans who swallowed his line that American consumers aren’t picking up the tab for his tariffs.
That’s unless they recently purchased a washing machine.
The WSJ reported that Trump’s tariffs cost US washing machine buyers about $1.5B as prices rose 12 percent.
And while Trump tweeted today that the US has taken in “$Billions” from tariffs, the WSJ reported the washing machine tariffs generated a modest $82.2M in new government revenue from February 2018 to January 2019. Those figures just don’t add up to a win for the USA.
Trump’s tariff strategy was a loser right from the beginning. But his on-again-off-again approach to applying the duties only exacerbates the situation.
“It’s a dangerous game,” Dan Ivascyn, chief investment officer at bond investment firm PIMCO, told the Financial Times. “We think some economic damage is dealt every day that this uncertainty lingers.”
David Frum, speechwriter for president Bush II and now an ardent anti-Trumper, summed things up quite nicely today.
He tweeted: "Trump inherited a thriving real estate company from his father and bankrupted it. He inherited a strong economy from Obama and steered it straight to severe recession."
Let’s hope the Trump Recession is mercifully short.