Trump’s tariffs would make Apple gear more expensive

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Donald Trump speaks to supporters at an immigration policy speech at the Phoenix Convention Center in Arizona.
Trump's trade war with China will hit consumers' wallets the hardest.
Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr CC

President Trump’s latest list of proposed tariffs on products manufactured in China would have a negative impact on some of Apple’s most popular products.

In a letter sent to the U.S. Trade Representative, Apple says the Apple Watch, AirPods and Apple Pencil would be caught in the crossfire of Trump’s escalating trade war with China. And regular consumers stand to lose the most.

The new HomePod and Mac mini will also be negatively affected by the tariffs, along with adapters and chargers for many products. Consumers would see an increase in prices if the tariffs are put in place.

“It is difficult to see how tariffs that hurt U.S. companies and U.S. consumers will advance the Government’s objectives with respect to China’s technology policies,” Apple said in its letter. “We hope, instead, that you will reconsider these measures and work to find other, more effective solutions that leave the U.S. economy and U.S. consumer stronger and healthier than ever before.”

Trump’s Trade War

Apple CEO Tim Cook didn’t sound that concerned about the tariffs during the company’s Q3 earnings call. Investors were told that the company was still evaluating the proposed list of goods that would be hit by the tariffs. Now that they’ve gotten a better idea of what would be affected the company is starting to sound the alarm.

“Our view on tariffs is that they show up as a tax on the consumer and wind up resulting in lower economic growth,” Tim told investors last month. Cook said tariffs can bring about nasty “unintended consequences” and called for cooler heads to prevail. “There’s an inescapable mutuality that serves the bring the US and China together,” said Cook.

The U.S. Trade Representative’s public notice and comment period for the proposed additional tariffs ended Thursday. You can read Apple’s full letter right here.

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