Trump touts China actions on trade one day after markets crumble

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President Trump on Wednesday tried to reassure jittery investors by touting his trade ceasefire with China, expressing confidence a broader deal will be reached. 

The messages come one day after Trump’s warning to Beijing that he is a “Tariff Man” sent stocks tumbling and raised fresh doubts about his truce with Chinese President Xi Jinping.   

{mosads}“Not to sound naive or anything, but I believe President Xi meant every word of what he said at our long and hopefully historic meeting. ALL subjects discussed!” Trump tweeted, referring to their trade negotiations at the Group of 20 summit last weekend in Argentina. 

The president pointed to a Bloomberg News report that China agreed to begin implementing certain trade reforms and purchasing U.S. products, such as soybeans and liquified natural gas. Beijing also confirmed for the first time that there is a 90-day timeline for negotiations with Trump. 

“Very strong signals being sent by China once they returned home from their long trip,” Trump tweeted.


The president also hailed as a “game changer” China’s decision to label fentanyl a controlled substance, a move he said could crack down on a drug that has fueled the opioid crisis in the U.S.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which Trump views as a barometer for his presidency, dropped nearly 800 points over doubts about the strength of the U.S.-China agreement. 

Markets are closed on Wednesday in honor of the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush, so it is unclear whether Trump’s comments will ease fears on Wall Street. 

Investors were initially jolted on Monday by news that Trump and Xi agreed to pause their trade war, with the U.S. president agreeing to delay tariff increases for 90 days while a broader negotiation on trade barriers proceeded.

But apparent cracks began to emerge in the deal, with the U.S. and China giving conflicting accounts of what each side actually agreed to in Argentina. There was also no consensus among White House aides about some key provisions of the agreement, such as whether China will reduce its 40-percent tariff on imported automobiles. 

Stocks tumbled further on Tuesday after Trump reiterated his threat to raise tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent if talks fail, comments that sharply contrasted with his optimistic tone coming out of last weekend’s meeting. 

“President Xi and I want this deal to happen, and it probably will. But if not remember, I am a Tariff Man,” Trump tweeted on Tuesday.  

“When people or countries come in to raid the great wealth of our Nation, I want them to pay for the privilege of doing so,” he added. “It will always be the best way to max out our economic power. We are right now taking in $billions in Tariffs. MAKE AMERICA RICH AGAIN.”

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