Trade

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.

Updated at 10:27 a.m. ET

The Misco speaker company in St. Paul, Minn., is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. But the company's future is uncertain — a result of the trade war between the U.S. and China.

Dan Digre's dad started Misco after serving in World War II.

"He was a B-17 radio operator and came back to the United States and married a woman with a bad radio," Digre says. "Turned out the radio wasn't bad but the speaker was bad, so he started his own speaker repair business."

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."

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. 

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%.

Maayan Silver

It’s been more than a year since the U.S. and China became entangled in a trade war.

A small percentage of Wisconsin manufacturers export their products to China. But a much larger portion import Chinese components for their products or assemble their products in China and get them shipped here.

One Milwaukee business that imports from China is Fyxation Bicycle Company. Owner Nick Ginster says the tariffs have significantly hit the Riverwest business.

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.

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.

A standard river barge can hold about the same amount as 60 semitrucks. In early June, 642 of them had floated to a standstill near American Commercial Barge Line's office outside Cairo, Ill.

"That's just me. That's not the other fleets in the area," said Mark Glaab, facility manager there. "That's just ACBL."

Updated at 11:15 a.m. ET Tuesday

U.S. trade negotiators opened a new round of talks in China on Tuesday. But there appears to be little pressure for a settlement, even as the year-old conflict begins to weigh on the global economy.

"We'll see what happens," President Trump told reporters Tuesday. "We're either going to make a great deal or we're not going to make a deal at all."

Maayan Silver

Wisconsin farmers are already juggling increasing tariffs on goods to and from China. In the meantime, last week, President Trump announced that he'll steadily increase tariffs on all Mexican goods imported to the U.S. because of, what he perceives as, Mexico’s failure to stem illegal immigration.

Maayan Silver

Trade talks between China and the United States fell apart a few weeks ago. Now, the two countries are promising to levy new tariffs on each other’s goods. One commodity caught in the crosshairs: American-grown ginseng root.

President Trump will hold off raising tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars in Chinese imports, after what he called "very productive" trade talks in Washington this weekend.

Tariffs had been scheduled to jump from 10 to 25 percent next Saturday. But Trump agreed to postpone that increase in hopes of negotiating a more comprehensive trade agreement.

Quebec Representative Urges Caution On Tariffs

Dec 3, 2018
Canadian National Railway Company

Of all the employment statistics in Wisconsin, this one might be the most surprising: 16,000 workers in Wisconsin are employed by companies based in Quebec. The companies for which many of them work are well-known names — BMO Harris Bank, CN Rail and Saputo Cheese.

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