In somewhat of a surprising admission, President Donald Trump said his ongoing trade war with China has hurt U.S. stock markets and the Dow would be 10,000 points higher than it is — but what he’s doing is a necessary evil to level the trading field in regards to Beijing.
“It was out of control and they were out of control.”
“Let me tell you, if I wanted to do nothing with China, our stock market, our stock market would be 10,000 points higher than it is right now but somebody had to do this,” Trump told a gaggle of reporters at the White House on Wednesday. “It was out of control and they were out of control.”
The Dow Jones Industrial was trading up 196 points, or 0.8%, at about 2:30 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, while the S&P 500 was up 25 points, or 0.9%, and the Nasdaq was up 86 points, or 1.1%.
However, August was the worst month of the year for the Dow amid volatility due to the ongoing trade war between the world’s two largest economies. Former Fed Chair Alan Greenspan called the tit-for-tat tariffs battle a “major global issue” that is “eroding” the global economy in an interview on Wednesday.
Markets were down Tuesday after the latest round of tariffs went into effect on Sept. 1. Trade talks are reportedly scheduled to resume sometime this month, though a specific date hasn’t been set and Trump wouldn’t say when.
“We’ll see what happens, if they want to make a deal, they’ll make a deal, if they don’t want to make a deal, that’s fine,” he said.
In all, Trump has slapped tariffs on about $360 billion worth of Chinese imports since the trade war began a year and a half ago. The latest round of tariffs on China were placed on electronics and other consumer goods. Though, Trump backed down on installing duties on a number of consumer goods popular at Christmas time, setting a Dec. 15 date for those tariffs to begin.