Apple CEO Tim Cook heads to China as President Trump orders 25 percent tariffs on up to $60 billion in Chinese imports

“Leaders of Apple Inc., Google and other U.S. technology giants head to China this weekend to pursue a familiar goal: To do more business in the world’s most populous nation. The effort has had mixed results, at best, in the past,” Mark Gurman reports for Bloomberg. “With a trade war brewing between the world’s two largest economies, the goal has gotten loftier still.”

“Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, and Ginny Rometty, head of IBM, are scheduled to attend the China Development Forum, an annual gathering that helps Western corporations build relationships with the country’s government officials,” Gurman reports. “On Thursday, President Donald Trump ordered 25 percent tariffs on at least $50 billion of Chinese imports, including information and communication technology. He also accused China of stealing intellectual property. China responded with its own duties on some U.S. imports.”

Gurman reports, “Apple could see a negative effect on about 15 percent of its business if China were to retaliate with duties on imports of U.S. products, Loup Ventures’ Gene Munster said in an email earlier on Thursday.”

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“On Thursday, President Donald Trump signed an executive memorandum to impose tariffs on up to $60 billion in Chinese imports. China then hit back with tariffs of its own on 128 U.S. products with an import value of $3 billion,” Arjun Kharpal reports for CNBC. “China’s government hasn’t specifically named the technology sector as one of its targets, but could potentially do so if the trade war was to escalate. Even if it did, analysts have said that the big technology giants in the U.S. would be insulated.”

“Apple, perhaps, looks the most vulnerable. The company is arguably one of the only big U.S. tech firms to have a decently-sized business in China and is the fifth-largest smartphone vendor in the country,” Kharpal reports. “In the three months to the end of December, its Greater China revenues totaled $17.9 billion, up 11 percent year-on-year.”

‘For (Tim) Cook and co, given the tightly-woven integration between Apple and Foxconn in China, we believe there is minimal risk to this relationship in our opinion and the last thing China is going to do is tinker with the Apple machine and impact its significant billions of investments in the country and major consumer sales within China, despite fears,'” Kharpal reports quoting an email from Daniel Ives, head of technology at GBH Insights.

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The tightrope Tim Cook tries to negotiate in China grows ever more tenuous.

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        1. That’s your take-away? Fact is you think Trump is our savior and we’ve been telling you all along you’re wrong. Trump was right that if he shot someone on 5th Ave we wouldn’t care and would probably still support him – only because we’re only pro-life until you leave the womb. BUT SPEND OUR MONEY and you’re done. Impeach was just fun to say – and if there is a way then the sooner the better. Whatever the case, he’s a one-term fool who reamed you today with his Pelosi/Schumer wand.

        2. Pelosi/Schumer wand? Seriously? You do realize that in this Omnibus, domestic spending increases by $128 B, but defense spending increases by 25% more: $160 B. In other words, most of the increased spending was backed by the borrow-and-spend Republicans. Not by the tax-and-spend Democrats.

          You do realize that under the last two Republican presidents, the deficit ballooned, and during the last two Democrat presidents, it decreased. (Under Clinton we had a surplus for the first time in decades. An $86 B surplus by 2000.)

          You guys keep spouting catch phrases that make it sound like things are the other way around, as if Republicans were fiscally conservative. But you’re mistaken. But you know, #MAGA or whatever.

  1. If I understand it correctly, this isn’t happening right now. They have 30 or 60 days or something to negotiate. Trump is just forcing them to the table to negotiate!

  2. Thankfully China won’t truly retaliate. They know Trump’s tariffs hurt the US more than they hurt China. Even if the tariffs were well designed, it would take American manufacturing decades to come back. This is not going to do that.

    What *is* going to happen is the people who voted for Trump are going to see their standard of living eroded by increases in their consumer goods. When stuff at Walmart is more expensive, they’ll buy less or borrow more.

    This won’t hurt Apple, but will hurt Arkansas while doing nothing for Akron.

      1. F U kent. Built cars in Detroit for decades, while fat cats took the profits and hollowed out the city. Detroiters are slowly rebuilding what corrupt officials destroyed. Ain’t no working man tougher than #Detroit Strong

    1. So not doing anything about the 10 times higher auto tariffs in China is OK?

      He’s trying to correct decades of ALL previous presidents screwing us by not correcting the tariffs from back then.

      1. Even if it was a smart idea to distort the market like that with tariffs, well, he’s doing a very shitty job of it.

        And I don’t think people understand the degree to which they personally benefit from the current state of the globalized economy.

        How much did shoes cost 30 years ago? The same as they do today. How is that possible? Clothes? Much cheaper today. How is it possible a $50″ television is essentially an “impulse purchase” for most of us these days? Repeat that for thousands of items, and you start to see why our standard of living today is higher than out was back then (even if incomes haven’t increased much for many people).

        As Steve Jobs said, those jobs aren’t coming back. To make it so, you’d have to seriously distort the market.

  3. That’s what I like about Apple, they will deal with anyone, after all if they have to deal with their home nation they can pretty well deal with anyone.
    That’s what happens when you put the planet first and work on keeping it great.

      1. Already done in fact I could have talked about that deadbeat country recently but I didn’t.
        So the check is in the mail, should be getting there around 2024.

  4. If these tarriff increases increase the costs of goods and services, might as well call the scheme a tax increase in effect. The CIA teaches its operatives to control any situation by creating chaos during stability and stability during chaos, so Trump is working like a CIA agent in a sense. Trump? A secret CIA operative, a Jackal? Hey, could be.

  5. This goes to show why it isn’t wise for Apple to be so heavily invested in China for their manufacturing. There are plenty of countries around the world with a high population of people who need a job. As for the need for engineers, for the right price, engineers can relocate. Diversification is important in investing and business but it seems that it hasn’t been applied enough to manufacturing.

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