"This is what a trade war looks like, and what we have warned against from the start," said National Retail Federation President Matthew Shay after President Trump threatened tariffs on another $100 billion in Chinese goods on Thursday. The White House says Trump has directed trade officials to identify products to be slapped with tariffs "in light of China’s unfair retaliation" to his earlier round of proposed tariffs, the AP reports. "Rather than remedy its misconduct, China has chosen to harm our farmers and manufacturers," Trump said in a statement, referring to Beijing's proposed tariffs on $50 billion on US imports. Shay warned that we are on a "dangerous downward spiral" that will hurt American families and urged Trump "to stop playing a game of chicken with the US economy," reports Reuters.
China warned that it would respond with more tariffs of its own, the Telegraph reports. China "will follow suit to the end, not hesitate to pay any price, resolutely counterattack, and take new comprehensive measures in response," the country's Commerce Ministry said in a statement. The Wall Street Journal notes that if China slaps tariffs on another $100 billion in US goods, it will bring an end to the tit-for-tat tariff threats: The tariffs would cover $150 billion in goods but US exports to China only totalled $130 billion last year, compared to more than $500 billion in Chinese exports to the US. In his statement, Trump—who is being heavily criticized by some of his fellow Republicans over the confrontation with Beijing—left the door open to talks aimed at "achieving free, fair, and reciprocal trade."