Washington Insider

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  • At the end of last week, President Donald Trump announced that the U.S. will lift its tariffs on Canadian and Mexican steel and aluminum. Bloomberg and others reported that the policy change will help open up a path for the three countries to ratify the rewritten North American Free Trade...

  • This week, after the Trump Administration pushed back hard against China's pullback on parts of a trade deal, the U.S. appeared to back away from threats to impose car tariffs on the EU and Japan. However, The Hill says this week that "The sighs of relief for European and Japanese...

  • The Washington Post is reporting this week that Senate Republicans "expressed growing concern Tuesday" that President Trump's escalating trade war with China is hurting their rural constituents. The Post sees this trend as ratcheting up tension between the White House and Congress on a...

  • With little notice, amid the discussions over the U.S.-China trade talk collapse, the House passed the "Trump-opposed" disaster-relief bill with more funding for Puerto Rico, Bloomberg and others reported recently. Bloomberg also said that in spite of Republican opposition, Senate Majority Leader...

  • The media focus this week seems to be all trade, all the time as President Trump tries to both calm investors and launch a "full-scale trade war with China" the Washington Post reported Monday. The paper also pointed to "cracks in administration policy" as one of the president's top advisers...

  • There is widespread concern this week about last week's collapse of the U.S.-China trade talks. Markets are watching for "China blowback" as the administration turns up the heat on trade. Bloomberg says, and observers should "forget all the optimism that...

  • The Trump Administration early Friday imposed higher tariffs on Chinese goods. Markets will be keying in on any word from talks in Washington between U.S. and Chinese officials. Expectations are the most important meeting may well have been a dinner session between U.S. Trade Representative...

  • Well, there's a very great deal of guessing about where the U.S.-China talks are just now and where they may go in the future. Reuters said yesterday that the "diplomatic cable from Beijing arrived in Washington late last Friday night with systematic edits to a nearly 150-page draft trade...

  • Senate Democrats are likely to score their biggest victories in two must-pass bills in the 116th Congress: a tax "extenders" package, in which they hope to negotiate broadened credits to offshore wind and battery storage and the next highway bill, where they intend to push low-emissions...

  • Suddenly, U.S. trade policy became murkier this week as policy analysts offered a "variety of interpretations of President Trump's latest tariff threat," Bloomberg said this week. Some, like Goldman and Citi, are optimistic a U.S.-China deal can still be reached. Others, including Raymond James and...

  • The Washington Post and others are watching last week's new $2 trillion infrastructure deal closely, and are reporting that it is already losing momentum. The first sign was the negative comment by the president's highly influential acting chief of staff who "is telling people inside and outside...

  • In something of a surprise, the Green New Deal, which is widely regarded as a left-leaning idea being advocated among Democrats, "could play a future Republican policy role under some circumstances," Bloomberg is reporting this week. The idea is that the plan "doesn't have a carbon tax at its...

  • There was heavy press coverage as Democratic congressional leaders reported on a meeting at the White House this week. As the session broke up, participants told the press that President Donald Trump had agreed to pursue a $2 trillion infrastructure plan to upgrade the nation's highways...

  • Bloomberg is reporting this week that there is "a flaw at the heart of central banking's approach to inflation targeting that's become a hot issue for the Federal Reserve as it takes a long, hard look at its strategy." The report notes that for decades, central bankers have pursued price...

  • To nobody's surprise, agricultural and manufacturing firms have been among those hardest hit by the new tariffs levied in the year-long trade war, according to a new survey of business economists, The Hill says this week. The National Association for...

  • The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency sided with Republicans in a bitter congressional dispute over the amount of government assistance that should be made available for rebuilding Puerto Rico. FEMA's head said "it wouldn't be good for the island if Washington paid the full cost...

  • Amid press reports that the U.S.-China talks are close to bearing fruit, the New York Times is reporting that European studies are suggesting that tariffs on Europeans are not having as much impact as formerly expected. For example, President Trump's...

  • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, with funding support from Congress, has worked hard to improve the American weather model. It has boosted its computing power, improved the way it brings in data, and enhanced how it simulates weather systems at small scales. Yet, more than...

  • The New York Times is reporting this week that government is having significant problems dealing with the outbreak. It says that African swine fever (ASF), which does not attack humans, has swept across the country, the world's largest pork producer...

  • Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is heading to Washington and the U.S. ag industry is unusually active in pushing efforts toward "more open" markets in Japan. Bloomberg's report notes that the Prime Minister will be hosted by President Trump at the White House April 26-27. The report...