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Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Reprinted with permission from Shareblue.

 

Trump’s trade war is also a war on American workers — including workers at iconically American companies like Ford.

Ford has already lost $1 billion thanks to Trump’s trade war, NBC News reports. And now the American automaker is looking at thousands of layoffs as part of a reorganization strategy.

The exact number of layoffs is unknown, but is estimated to be about 24,000 workers worldwide, according to a recent analysis from Morgan Stanley.

“Ford has already warned that President Donald Trump’s auto tariffs have impacted the company to the tune of $1 billion, and the president’s trade policies threaten to play havoc with Ford’s ongoing reorganization,” Ford CFO Bob Shanks told NBC News.

The popular Ford Mustang could also be on the chopping block as a direct result of Trump’s trade war with China. The Mustang had been the most popular U.S. car  in China before the country imposed tariffs on American-made vehicles in response to Trump’s tariffs.

Now Ford may have to cut production on its most iconically American car, which would also mean a reduction of U.S. jobs.

Trump’s actions are a striking contrast with what President Obama did to save the American auto industry just a decade ago.

After the 2008 Great Recession, U.S. auto manufacturers were in deep trouble. General Motors (GM) was in the most trouble — but if GM went under, then the ripple effect would have led to “a partial collapse of the supplier industry that would lead to a 50 percent drop in production at Ford and the American-based foreign car plants,” Politifact notes.

In 2012, Ford CEO Alan Mulally said, “If GM and Chrysler would’ve gone into free-fall, they could’ve taken the entire supply base into free-fall also, and taken the U.S. from a recession into a depression.”

President Obama’s actions to save jobs in the auto industry gained bipartisan praise, including from the Economist and even the very conservative Heritage Foundation.

Trump, on the other hand, is wreaking havoc on the auto industry and pushing Ford into cutting production and laying off workers.

Ford is far from the only business to suffer under Trump’s ill-advised trade war. Factories are shutting down and sending jobs to Mexico, companies like Whirlpool and Harley Davidson are seeing huge economic losses, and farmers across the country are struggling.

The trade war is even making recovery from natural disasters more expensive for homeowners in the Carolinas trying to rebuild after Hurricane Florence.

Some economic experts question whether Trump even knows how tariffs work.

But whether or not Trump understands the consequences of his actions, American workers are suffering those consequences every day.

Published with permission of The American Independent. 

 

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