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Wilbur Ross Tells Davos: U.S. is Done ‘Being a Patsy’ on Trade


(Claire Zillman – Fortune)

President Donald Trump’s decision on Tuesday to impose tariffs on imported washing machines and solar panels launched in earnest his long-anticipated crusade against what he sees as unfair trade. It also stoked concerns that a trade war looms.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross didn’t necessarily allay those fears at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland on Wednesday, stating: “Trade wars are fought every single day, the difference is U.S. troops are now coming to the ramparts.”

Ross added nuance to that remark, speaking on a panel at Davos later in the day: “Nobody is trying to ignite what Smoot-Hawley did during the Depression,” Ross said, referring to legislation passed in 1930 that slapped tariffs on nations that shipped goods to the U.S. and arguably made the era’s financial downturn even worse. Rather, the Trump administration is trying to fix the “incorrect policy decisions that our government and others made earlier in the process,” he said. Click here to read more.

Related: China Has Plenty of Options to Retaliate Against U.S. Tariffs (Bloomberg News)