economy

Updated at 2:07 p.m. ET

A year and a half after launching his trade war against China, President Trump signed a partial truce on Wednesday.

"We mark more than just an agreement. We mark a sea change in international trade," Trump said during a White House signing ceremony. "At long last, Americans have a government that puts them first."

Updated at 9:58 a.m. ET

The tariff war has caused a lot of anxiety for business owners and farmers. But how much has it hurt the overall economy?

The stock market got off to a rocky start this week when President Trump launched a new round of tariff threats. But administration loyalists insist concern about the trade war is overblown.

'Milwaukee Magazine' Explores Women's Work In 2019

Nov 25, 2019
Libby Lang / Milwaukee Magazine

The November issue of Milwaukee Magazine focuses on women. From profiles of local women who are doing great things to national trends on pay equity, the issue takes a snapshot of how women are doing.

Drew Angerer / Getty Images

Updated at 1:43 p.m. CT 

Vice President Mike Pence visited a northeastern Wisconsin shipbuilding company on Wednesday. He went to Fincantieri Marinette Marine, a firm that already has two major deals with the U.S. Navy and is competing for a third. 

President Trump says the U.S. and China are close to striking a mini trade agreement. But he offered no guarantees.

In a speech to the Economic Club of New York on Tuesday, Trump downplayed the cost of his trade war, which has hurt farm exports and contributed to a slowdown in the U.S. manufacturing sector.

"The real cost would be if we did nothing," he said.

Trump offered few clues about the status of trade talks except to say, "We're close."

Milwaukee Jewish Federation

The Federal Reserve cut interest rates on lending by a quarter percentage point on Wednesday. Many analysts predicted another rate cut to spur business growth and head off a potential recession. But a national economist told hundreds of people in Milwaukee Tuesday that consumer spending should be able to keep the U.S. economy going anyway. 

Maayan Silver

Trade issues continue to go unresolved as farmers and manufacturers face higher import and export tariffs with China.

Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence has been traveling the country pushing a trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico. Pence was in Wisconsin Wednesday to drum up support for the agreement. 

Marti Mikkelson

Updated on Oct. 21 at 12:40 p.m.

Strauss Brands is no longer looking to build a slaughterhouse at Century City, which is on Milwaukee's north side, the company's president and CEO announced Monday afternoon.

What do goldfish have to do with the global trade balance?

That's a question that has Ken Fischer reeling. He sells rare goldfish. And goldfish — the live pet, not the snack food — are tucked in on page 31 of list three of Chinese imports that face tariffs of 25%.

LaToya Dennis

What does it take to get people out of their homes and willing to sit in a restaurant these days?

That's a question a lot of businesses are grappling with in the era of Uber Eats, Grubhub and other food delivery services. Across the United States and in the Milwaukee area, some developers are betting on food halls.

Alex Wong / Getty Images

President Donald Trump's agriculture secretary said Tuesday during a stop in Wisconsin that he doesn't know if the family dairy farm can survive as the industry moves toward a factory farm model.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told reporters following an appearance at the World Dairy Expo in Madison that it's getting harder for farmers to get by on milking smaller herds.

Rusty / stock.adobe.com

Wisconsin's paper industry has faced many challenges as mills close and people switch to digital. But there is one sector of the paper industry that is growing: specialty paper.

"Specialty paper goes across a broad gamut of things," says Steve Ottone, technical service manager at Omya — a chemical industry company headquartered in Switzerland. "Think about the ways that paper touches your life. Say you have your morning cup of tea. In that tea bag what actually holds the tea?"

The gap between the richest and the poorest U.S. households is now the largest it's been in the past 50 years — despite the median U.S. income hitting a new record in 2018, according to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Chuck Quirmbach

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is heading to Japan on Friday. This is his first international trade mission since being elected. He's scheduled to visit Tokyo, Yokohama and Chiba City. He's also planning to attend this year's Midwest U.S. -Japan Association conference, along with some other governors.

Evers' trip continues Wisconsin's long association with Japan. That connection got a big boost in 1973 when a Japanese firm, Kikkoman Foods, began making soy sauce in Walworth.

Updated at 4:26 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is acting as a cheering section for the U.S. economy. And at least on Monday, investors were cheering along. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose nearly 250 points or 1%. The S&P 500 jumped 1.2% and the Nasdaq was up 1.35%.

President Trump and his team are downplaying warnings of slower economic growth, despite signals from the bond market that a recession could be looming. At the same time, the president is also calling on the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates again to help boost growth.

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