American small and medium-size companies that rely on China are scrambling to adjust their business plans in response to the escalating trade war.Traderead more
Here are the products that stand to be the most affected by China's new tariffs on $75 billion worth of U.S. goods.Marketsread more
The European Union will respond in kind if the U.S. imposes tariffs on France over digital tax plan, EU chief Donald Tusk told G-7.Technologyread more
The world's second biggest economy is past a point where it cannot ignore its enormous debt anymore, according to an analyst.China Economyread more
Trump said he will raise tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods to 30% and hike duties on another $300 billion in products to 15%.Politicsread more
China said on Saturday it strongly opposes Washington's decision to levy additional tariffs on $550 billion worth of Chinese goods and warned the United States of consequences...Politicsread more
Stocks dropped after Donald Trump ordered that U.S. manufacturers find alternatives to their operations in China.US Marketsread more
The final week of August could be highly volatile as markets fret over the economy and the latest developments in trade wars.Market Insiderread more
Federal Reserve Vice Chair Richard Clarida said Friday that the global economy has deteriorated in the past month.Marketsread more
The latest escalation in the trade war ups the odds the economy will fall into recession and that the Fed will aggressively cut rates.Market Insiderread more
"We don't need China and, frankly, would be far better off without them," Trump tweeted.Politicsread more
Back when Barack Obama was president, congressional Republicans could frequently be heard arguing that both short-term budget deficits and the long-term accumulation of national debt were acute economic problems that needed to be addressed immediately. Debt aversion was a key reason not to stimulate the economy, not even with tax cuts like the payroll tax holiday that expired in 2012 due to GOP opposition.
Today, though, Republican leaders are lining up behind a tax plan that looks sure to increase the deficit, with the money largely flowing to unpopular tax cuts for big business and the rich.
To some critics, it smacks of partisan hypocrisy. But to congressional Republicans themselves, it's, well, partisan hypocrisy. Via the Hill:
"It's a great talking point when you have an administration that's Democrat-led," said Representative Mark Walker, Republican of North Carolina and the chairman of the Republican Study Committee, a group of about 150 conservative House members. "It's a little different now that Republicans have both houses and the administration."
In truth, even though the national debt is large in absolute terms and projected to grow in future years, there's little reason to believe it's a big problem currently. Interest rates remain fairly low, and to the extent that they're not super-duper low it's because the Federal Reserve is slowly but surely trying to raise them, even though there's no sign of inflation. Taking on more debt to finance a tax cut for the rich may not be a good idea, but it's also probably not going to cause any big problems.
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But the benign nature of the debt situation was even more true two or five or eight years ago when interest rates were rock-bottom, unemployment was sky-high, and putting people back to work with new spending or low payroll taxes was absolutely vital.