There is now a phase-one trade deal between the U.S. and China relieving some of the tensions between the world's two larges economies. With political moods high in both countries, each team has a lot to lose-or a lot to gain, in the continuing negotiations for phase-two. Information on the trade agreement has been sparse and continues to be released, so the information in this article is subject to change.
The current deal outlines a minimum amount of guaranteed purchases of U.S. agricultural products by China and cancels the round of tariffs that were set to come into effect Sunday. Most of the tension this week was caused by uncertainty surrounding that round of tariffs. These tariffs would have been placed on $156 billion worth of Chinese goods, primarily cell phones, laptops, clothing, and toys. These products are, of course, especially popular during the holidays, so this tariff was never popular.
The Trump Administration has also agreed to roll back tariffs on $120 billion worth of Chinese goods to 7.5%. $250 billion in goods will still be under a 25% tariff. The agreement also includes reforms by China on its protection of intellectual property, technology transfer, financial services, and currency exchange.
According to the top negotiator for the U.S., Robert Lightzer, China has agreed to purchase $40 billion worth of agricultural goods compared t...