President Donald Trump is instructing businesses in the United States to cease their relationships with China, using Twitter as the medium for these official demands. “Our great American companies are hereby ordered to immediately start looking for an alternative to China,” Trump wrote this morning.
Our Country has lost, stupidly, Trillions of Dollars with China over many years. They have stolen our Intellectual Property at a rate of Hundreds of Billions of Dollars a year, & they want to continue. I won’t let that happen! We don’t need China and, frankly, would be far….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 23, 2019
The four-tweet-long thread of assertive remarks came as a response to China’s initiation of additional tariffs on $75 billion worth of U.S. products, a retaliation to President Trump’s plan to raise tariffs on an additional $300 billion worth of Chinese goods, of which U.S. consumers actually end up paying for, not China.
Trump did not make clear if non-abiders of these demands to ditch China would face any retribution, nor is it clear if this is actually an authoritative declaration that can be “policed,” or simply just an imploring suggestion by the president.
Around the world and here at home, the constant tug of war between the global economic powerhouses has many leaders and economists fearing that the trade war could continue to weaken the economic growth globally, and even result in a global recession.
These fears were apparent in the plunging of stocks after the president’s tweets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted, closing 623.34 points down at 25,628.90; the S&P 500 Index fell 75.84 points to 2,847.11; the Nasdaq Composite dropped 239.62 points to close at 7,751.77.
This makes the fourth straight week that the major indexes posted weekly losses.