March 8, 2018

COMIC GOLD:

Trump Administration Admits Trump's $1 Billion Demand From China Was Supposed to Be $100 Billion (Jonathan Chait, 3/08/18, New York)
 
Earlier this week, President Trump raised eyebrows when he told reporters of a phone call he had held with North Korea, in which he warned the dangerous rogue state it must de-nuclearize. (His administration later admitted quietly Trump had actually spoken with South Korea, not North Korea.) This week, Trump ventured another strange foreign policy pronouncement. He had asked China to produce a plan to reduce its trade deficit by One Billion Dollars. He even capitalized it to underscore the significance of the towering sum he proposed to extract: [...]

This demand was incredibly puzzling to trade economists, and regular economists, and anybody who had ever read a couple paragraphs in a random business story. China runs a trade surplus of $375 billion with the United States. Trump was demanding a reduction of 0.3 percent, or less than a single day's worth of imports.

The Wall Street Journal's Lingling Wei reports that the demand was actually supposed to be $100 billion. 

Posted by at March 8, 2018 4:35 AM

  

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