Study: Auto tariffs would kill 157,000 jobs

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President Trump’s proposed tariffs on imported automobiles and parts would cost the U.S. economy 157,000 jobs, according to a report by the Trade Partnership, a trade policy consultancy.

“We find that the tariffs would have a very small positive impact on high-skilled workers in the motor vehicle and parts sectors, but very large negative impacts on workers — both high- and lower-skilled — in other sectors of the economy,” the study says.

{mosads}In all, the tariff policy would boost jobs in the auto sector by 92,000, but then destroy 250,000 jobs in the rest of the economy, according to the study. The price of foreign vehicles would rise from $30,000 to $36,400, a 21 percent increase. All in all, the economy would lose 0.1 percent of its value.

Those effects don’t take into account any potential retaliation by American trade partners for the tariffs.

The Trump administration is embroiled in a series of high-stakes trade disputes.

In addition to the threat of raising auto tariffs on national security grounds, the administration is threatening 25 percent tariffs on Chinese goods, negotiating with Europe over the imposition of steel and aluminum tariffs, and struggling to reach a new deal on the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico ahead of the November midterm elections.

The administration’s moves have drawn criticism from Republicans, who traditionally back free trade, as well as business groups.

“Extending the reach of these tariffs and quotas to additional countries is certain to provoke widespread retaliation from abroad and would put at risk the economic momentum achieved through the administration’s tax and regulatory reforms. We urge the administration to take this risk seriously,” U.S. Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President Myron Brilliant said Wednesday in regard to the steel and aluminum tariffs being discussed with Europe. 

The administration set a June 1 deadline for deciding whether to grant Europe an exemption from the steep metal tariffs, as it has for other close U.S. trade partners like Canada, Mexico, Australia and South Korea.

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