Agricultural ETFs React to Trump's Trans-Pacific Partnership

Clay Curtis
April 13, 2018

Trump said throughout his presidential campaign "The Trans-Pacific Partnership is another disaster done and pushed by special interests who want to rape our country, just a continuing rape of our country".

-The TPP members, including Canada, Mexico and Japan, proceeded without the United States after Trump pulled out, and signed the sweeping new agreement last month, signaling that Washington risked missing the boat.

Japan's Kyodo News service reported that Finance Minister Taro Aso cautioned that Trump "can be temperamental and might say something different the next day".

Trump has asked US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and new chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow to examine re-entering the free trade agreement and "take another look at whether or not a better deal could be negotiated". It would be aimed at opening USA farmers to more overseas markets.

"That would certainly be good news throughout farm country", said Sen.

The TPP, a trade deal that was to involve 12 countries including the USA, was conceived under former President Barack Obama as a way to counter China's surging power in the region.

President Trump, who held the White House meeting aimed at easing the high anxiety of Midwest lawmakers as a result of the China trade dispute, has previously not ruled out rejoining the TPP.

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Now, in response to Trump's announced intention to impose new or higher tariffs on $150 billion worth of Chinese imports, China says it will impose new levies on an array of USA exports, including wheat, soybeans, corn, cranberries and orange juice, raising fears among us farmers that their livelihoods are threatened.

On Thursday, Republican senators, congressmen and governors from Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, Kansas, Texas and other farming states met with the president to express their concerns.

"In a series of broken promises President Trump made to the working people of this country, rejoining the job-killing Trans-Pacific Partnership would be the biggest yet", the statement said on Thursday.

He is telling the group, "Everything is going to be better". Xi Jinping responded by releasing a list of American products that he will render unaffordable to Chinese consumers via the imposition of 25 percent duties - the second that Trump follows through on his tariffs threat.

Roberts and Sasse said they poured cold water on the president's idea that if tariff tensions with China escalate, he will provide federal aid to USA farmers. "A USA -alone action. that's not going to solve the real problems that we have".

Kennedy is appearing before the House Ways and Means Committee, which is examining the impact of tariffs.

At his Senate confirmation hearing for the post of Trump's next secretary of state, Central Intelligence Agency director Mike Pompeo was asked about reports that Trump planned to re-engage on TPP and replied: "That news was news to me".

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