Donald Trump Accuses China, EU Of Currency Manipulation

That came after CNBC on Thursday aired portions of a Trump interview in which he criticized the Federal Reserve's current course of interest rate hikes.

On Chinese tariffs, Trump said he was "ready to go to 500", referring to the roughly $505 billion (€431 billion) in Chinese goods imported to the United States previous year.

"The United States should not be penalised because we are doing so well", Trump tweeted.

There's little evidence the Fed's tightening is constricting the second-longest USA economic expansion on record: The unemployment rate under Trump has fallen to 4 per cent, from 4.8 per cent the month he was sworn in, and some economists predict gross domestic product last quarter expanded by more than 4 per cent - about double the pace in the first three months of the year.

In excerpts of the interview released on Thursday Trump had broken with the long-established executive branch practice of not commenting on the Federal Reserve's decisions out of respect for its independence. So the Fed's rate hikes have lit a fire under the US dollar, something which tends to widen the country's trade deficit as foreign countries with weaker currencies become much cheaper to import from.

About $US505 billion ($680.3 billion) of Chinese goods were imported to the US in 2017, leading to a trade deficit of almost $US376 billion ($506.5 billion), US government data showed.

Trump also accused the European Union, China, and "others" of manipulating their currencies lower and creating an uneven playing field with the US.

The Fed hiked interest rates twice this year, and plans to raise them two more times by the end of 2018.

"I'm not thrilled", the president told CNBC. But he also told CNBC during the campaign that he is a "low interest-rate-person".

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"Instead of making their exports better, they make them cheaper", The Balance says. He also called Jerome Powell, whom Trump nominated to lead the Fed, a "very good man".

"We have a long tradition here of conducting policy in a particular way, and that way is independent of all political concerns", he said.

He wants the growth to continue and anxious that interest rate hikes will rein in investments.

"Now I'm just saying the same thing that I would have said as a private citizen", he said, asserting that he didn't care about precedent.

"I am not pleased", said Carl Tannenbaum, a former Chicago Fed official and chief economist at Northern Trust.

"Our currency is going up", Trump said. Critics lined up this week to urge the administration to reject the tariffs, arguing they would raise auto prices, squeeze automakers by increasing the cost of imported components and invite retaliation from trading partners - and allies - like the European Union and Canada.

President Trump isn't happy with the Federal Reserve-but the fact that he said so is surprising.

In a pair of tweets following the interview, Trump accused both China and the European Union of manipulating their currencies to keep interest rates low.

The Wall Street Journal noted that Mr Trump's comments had an immediate impact on global markets, sending the stocks lower.

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