The Sino-American trade war may slash global GDP by $600 billion.
Monica McNeil

2019-06-15 10:28:00 Sat ET

The Sino-American trade war may slash global GDP by $600 billion. If the Trump administration imposes tariffs on all the Chinese imports and China retaliates with countermeasures, the global stock market may decline by 10%. In this worst-case scenario, Bloomberg expects global GDP to fall 0.6% or $600 billion by mid-2021. The same simulation suggests that both U.S. and Chinese economic output may decline by 0.7% to 1%.  Several countries such as Canada and Europe rely heavily on Sino-American trade and so may suffer as a result. In terms of better balancing the bilateral trade deficit, this deficit has indeed declined from $91 billion to $80 billion from 2018Q1 to 2019Q1 (as the Trump tariffs come into effect). Further, the current U.S. CPI inflation hovers in the range of 1.6% to 1.9% (still below the 2% target level). This fact thus defies the Chinese allegation that the Trump tariffs may substantially raise the Chinese import prices with substantial inflationary pressure.

U.S. retail sales growth continues to slow down even though American consumer confidence rebounds in early-2019 due to higher wages and inelastic labor market conditions. The recent 8% renminbi devaluation coincides with the 25% Chinese stock market plunge and less foreign direct investment.

 


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