German Automakers At Odds With Trump

BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images
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It’s Germany’s turn to feel the heat after President-elect Donald Trump turned his ire on the country’s automakers, its supposed dominance of the European Union, and the failings of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s refugee policy.

In a weekend interview given jointly to Germany’s biggest tabloid, Bild-Zeitung, and (somewhat incongruously), the august Times of London, Trump repeated for the first time as President-elect pretty much what he had said a thousand times as candidate last year. It’s as if Europe either hadn’t been listening or, more likely, had simply been hoping he would take a different tone as President.


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As far as business is concerned, the most alarming part of Trump’s interview was a threat of import duties (already familiar to U.S. ears) that sent a chill through German auto stocks: BMW lost 1.3%, Daimler – the maker of Mercedes-Benz cars and Freightliner trucks – lost 1.4%, while Volkswagen lost 1.9%. The three rely on the U.S. market for about 20% of their global sales and, probably, a bit less of their profits.

Trump singled out a BMW plant currently under construction in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, where the Munich-based company started construction last year and aims to build its 3-series sedans from 2019.

“If you want to build cars in the world, then I wish you all the best. You can build cars for the United States, but for every car that comes to the USA, you will pay 35 percent tax,” Trump said.

read more at fortune.com

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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!