Michael Pillsbury with the Hudson Institute. Larry Kudlow on President Donald J. Trump’s economic advisory team. Investor, business man, and Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary, who has done business in China for years. There are plenty of voices weighing in on the U.S. China trade war. The Fed has signaled it will do what it takes, and markets leveled off and rose near or beyond the open by the closing bell. Manufactured home stocks closed mixed. Let’s dive into insights from pros who are encouraged, not discouraged, by what they see evolving.
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- President Donald Trump’s tactics in the trade war are clear, but the objectives are fuzzy.
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· “If you want to be successful, you have to be strategic,” economist Steven Blitz says. “Because the fact is … I can’t even tell you what victory is.”
In a CNBC interview Tuesday, White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow began to quantify what President Donald J. Trump is looking for as it cranks up the trade tensions with China in search of an agreement it deems favorable to U.S. interests.
But before diving into that, let’s note that the president’s men are talking as much – perhaps more – to China and others as they are to the American people and investors. Negotiations occur in a variety of forms. No slur on Mr. Kudlow intended, but what is said may or may not mean what it seems to say.
“The president has said numerous times his ultimate goal with respect to the world trading system is zero tariffs, zero non-tariff trading barriers and zero subsidies,” said Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council. “There are considerable benefits to truly free and lawful trading. There are consumer benefits and business benefits on both sides.”
Citizen Trump, going back to the Reagan Administration, has criticized U.S. trade policy. He’s not alone, as mavericks like Ross Perot made similar statements on trade policy in the 1990s as citizen Trump did. So those who take a historic view of the 45th president are not surprised by the roller coaster, noting that the ride has been mostly up as measured by the economy, jobs, incomes, and the markets.
“The president is a transformative president. He’s rebuilding the American economy and we’ve had some considerable success. These things are not easy, and that includes trade imbalances,” Kudlow stated. “So what we’re trying to do is have fair, freer, reciprocal trading with China.”
Advisor Kudlow tossed out a dollar figure of $600 billion; “if we were able to reclaim what we have lost” in intellectual property theft.
With that tee up, Michael Pillsbury with the Hudson Institute in the video below is insightful.
Entertaining and insightful is Shark Tank star, investor and business owner Kevin O’Leary. “I need the end game with this administration to end up with access to the Chinese market and protection of my IP,” O’Leary said. “Those are two things I want, and until we get that I don’t care how much soybeans they buy, it’s irrelevant. What we need is a level playing field.”
“The upside is immense for the S&P if we get this deal done,” he said. “Keep squeezing their heads. Don’t stop.”
Certainly, there are those that think this strategy could backfire. But those who claim knowledge of the president’s vision say that as 45 himself has said, ‘we are playing with the bank’s money.’ Get the economy and the markets up, then take some pressure tactics that may push them down for a time, but with a rebound just beyond.
If so, it’s a long game, not a fast game. That sounds just a tad like something a billionaire in Omaha might think too. Take the time needed to get the deal right.
Some of these firms invest in manufactured housing, or are otherwise connected, but may do other forms of investing or business activities too.
- NOTE: The chart below includes the Canadian stock, ECN, which purchased Triad Financial Services.
- NOTE: Drew changed its name and trading symbol at the end of 2016 to Lippert (LCII).
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