Trump Announces Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum From Brazil and Argentina

In an early tweet, the president announced he is restoring tariffs on aluminum and steel shipped from Argentina and Brazil, reports the Wall Street Journal.

In a tweet posted just after 6 a.m., Trump said the countries have been "presiding over a massive devaluation of their currencies" which he says is bad for American farmers.

Trump's trade war with China hurt USA farmers after Beijing retaliated when the president imposed levies on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese-made goods.

In Argentina, investors are on the sidelines waiting for a new direction to the economy, which will be set by president-elect Alberto Fernandez when he takes office next week.

Brazil is grappling with stubborn double-digit unemployment, and its economy is headed toward its third straight year of roughly 1% growth, following two years of deep recession.

In a second Twitter post, Trump signaled that he wants the USA central bank to do something about suppressed currencies. Additionally, Argentina's Foreign Ministry said it will begin negotiations with the US Department of State. The South American nation's steel accounts for about 3.5% of the 110 million tons consumed in the USA a year. That has prompted fears that the USA could lead the world into an era of weaponized monetary policy.

Steel and iron products are the second biggest Brazil export to the USA, tracking only crude oil and totalling US$2.25 billion between January and October, according to Brazilian government data.

The Brazilian real strengthened 0.2% to 4.2267 per dollar at 9:23 NY.

AK Steel Holding Corp. rose 3.3% at 9:38 NY. U.S. Steel Corp. was up 0.7 per cent, and Steel Dynamics Inc. was also indicated higher. The company runs plants in the U.S.

Both Brazil and Argentina were among a group of USA allies that Trump had exempted from steel and aluminum tariffs in March 2018.

-With assistance from Shawn Donnan and Courtney Dentch.



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