Published: Sat, October 13, 2018
Money | By Hannah Jacobs

Trump warns he could do ‘a lot more’ on China trade

Trump warns he could do ‘a lot more’ on China trade

Such a move would be a sign of the Trump administration ramping up its use of the currency channel to negotiate better trade deals for the U.S. Add Trump Administration as an interest to stay up to date on the latest Trump Administration news, video, and analysis from ABC News.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin - in comments published in the Financial Times this week - warned China against engaging in competitive currency devaluations.

"The president has been clear", Mnuchin said in an interview with CNBC.

Mnuchin, who praised Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, said the president understands that the Fed is doing its job.

Trump, who has frequently invoked rising stock prices as an affirmation of his economic policies, downplayed the significance of the market drop even as he pointed the finger at the Fed.


Mnuchin declined to comment on Trump's latest attack on the USA central bank, though he repeated that the Fed has independence.

"He doesn't feel the need to attack at all", Mnuchin said. The US dollar has strengthened against a range of currencies this year as American interest rates have risen. "And those are obviously natural concerns". "Their economy has gone down very substantially and I have a lot more to do if I want to do it".

"The fundamentals of the US economy continue to be extremely strong, I think that's why the stock market has performed as well as it has".

Mnuchin met Thursday with Yi Gang, head of China's central bank.

"I am concerned about the weakness in the currency".


The increase, the result of both increasing exports from China to the USA - up 14.5 percent from the same month past year - and a decline in the goods that China is buying from the U.S.

China enjoyed a record high $34.1 billion trade surplus with the U.S.in September, taking the surplus for the year to date to $225.8 billion, according to Chinese statistics released on Friday.

Despite the rhetoric, Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping plan to meet at the G20 summit in Argentina in late November, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing officials in both countries.

The Treasury Department is expected to issue next week its twice-a-year report on whether China or any other country is manipulating its currency to gain trade advantages.

Reports that Mnuchin has advised against labeling China a currency manipulator - a status that could trigger penalties - were also seen as easing tensions.


Trump has made similar accusations, although security experts say they didn't know of any Chinese influence operations comparable to Russian activities during the 2016 presidential election.

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