Stock markets in both countries have climbed this week despite fresh tariff announcements.
Analysts said the duties were not as severe as traders expected, and there is still hope of reconciliation. But reality may prove otherwise as the world's two largest economies, each coming from a vastly different culture, pursue their own development.
"Now we need to think about whether this current trade war will turn into an economic cold war. We hope it doesn't," said Jing Ulrich, managing director and vice chairman of Asia Pacific at J.P. Morgan Chase.
"There is still a chance that two sides may come to the negotiation table," she said Thursday, during a panel discussion at the World Economic Forum conference in Tianjin. "And there is still a chance that some sort of reconciliation may be reached — and we all know if the trade war goes on, it is going to be a lose-lose situation. No one in the world will be benefiting."