US companies in everything from computer chips to tractors have said President Donald Trump’s trade wars, including disputes with Beijing and global steel tariffs, have had an impact on them. Even for some of the expected winners, such as steel companies, the benefits of the president’s tariffs are not entirely clear. Trump said on May 5 he would raise tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10 per cent to 25 per cent, ratcheting up pressure on Beijing to agree to a deal.
Apple Inc cut its fiscal first quarter sales forecast, blaming slowing iPhone sales in China where uncertainty around US-China trade relations has hurt the economy. Late last month after Apple slashed prices, sales picked up and Apple cited the improved tone of the trade war for a stronger outlook.
Intel Corp The chipmaker last month cut its revenue forecast for 2019, citing a slowdown in demand from China.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV forecast higher commodities costs, driven by tariffs, would cost 750 million euros for the year. General Motors Co projected $1 billion extra costs this year for tariffs and raw materials. Steel and aluminum prices have eased, but prices for other commodities such as palladium have risen, it said.
Ford Motor Co Ford said that in 2018 it incurred “headwinds” of about $750 million in tariff-related effects. Lower sales volume and increased commodity costs including tariff-related effects added $500 million to first-quarter costs over the prior year.
The motorcycle manufacturer said European Union and China tariff-related costs were $23.7 million in 2018 and are expected to range between $100 million and $120 million in 2019.
Caterpillar said tariffs would cost the company $250 million to $350 million in 2019 if there was no relief.
Deere & Co
The manufacturer said in February it expects US tariffs on Chinese imports will cost $100 million in 2019.
Archer Daniels Midland Co
The commodities trader’s adjusted operating profit slumped 30 per cent in the fourth quarter to $183 million as the China trade war hit its sorghum and soybean origination business.
The company reported a $125 million mark-to-market loss in August on a position in soybeans that bet a China trade war would be averted. Bunge’s profits then plunged in the fourth quarter as a temporary truce with China caused soybean prices to fall and slashed the value of its Brazilian soybean inventory by $125 million.
Commodities trader Cargill said in March that US-China trade tensions and other supply chain disruptions continued to drag on earnings in origination and processing, the company’s primary grain-trading unit.
No 1 US steel producer Nucor Corp posted record earnings and shipped a record amount of steel in 2018, benefiting from the tariffs. But the company last month forecast first-quarter profit below Wall Street estimates, citing lower average selling prices of steel sheets and delay in shipments to customers in the construction sector.
The tariffs imposed by the Trump administration on steel imports, mainly from China, have increased domestic production, leading to a drop in steel prices.
Brazil’s JBS, the world’s largest meatpacker, has been able to boost meat exports to China as the tensions between the Washington and Beijing escalated. The company’s share of exports to China rose to more than 24 per cent last year vs under 21 per cent in 2016 and 2017.
Louis Dreyfus Company
The global agricultural commodity merchant said that trading opportunities created by the US-Chinese trade dispute boosted its soybean business last year. The company posted record soybean export volumes from Brazil, boosting profits 12 per cent vs the previous year.