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Biden Considers Dropping China Tariffs to Fight Inflation
Published on: 2022-05-12
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U.S. President Joe Biden said he could drop some of the tariffs imposed against Chinese imports to help control rising consumer prices in the U.S. — just as Wall Street braces for another inflation report north of 8%.

The White House is reviewing the penalties imposed under former President Donald Trump — which raised prices on everything from diapers to clothing and furniture — and could opt to remove them altogether, Biden said in addressing the nation from Washington on Tuesday.

“We’re looking at what would have the most positive impact,” Biden said, adding that removing the tariffs was currently under discussion.

Trump levied a raft of financial penalties on Chinese goods in a long-running tit-for-tat trade war with Beijing in an effort to bolster American-made goods.

The extent to which removing Trump’s taxes on Chinese products would cool inflation is a matter of debate among economists, but many say easing or removing the tariffs altogether is among the few options available to a White House eager to pull every lever available to ease costs.

The president reiterated that a combination of Covid-19 protocols at home and abroad and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has caused prices in the U.S. to jump at their fastest pace since the early 1980s.

While West Texas crude futures are well off highs of over $130 a barrel seen in March, oil contracts for June delivery were last seen trading around $100, about $30 above where they began the year.

The president noted that the war has also driven up the prices of contracts for key food products such as wheat and corn, which are up 40% and 30%, respectively, in 2022. Russia and Ukraine together supply more than a quarter of the world’s wheat.



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