CNBC’s Jim Cramer told CNBC on Monday that the reported 10 percent threshold for new U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods is not enough to really worry Wall Street.
The Trump administration is expected to announce the new trade measures against China as early as Monday. Beijing has threatened retaliatory measures.
“I think that people have to start recognizing that the $200 billion number isn’t as important as the 10 percent on $200 billion,” Cramer said, comparing that with the 25 percent figure originally floated by the administration.
“I just think people don’t think that this is that big of a deal,” Cramer said on “Squawk on the Street.” “It’s just not playing out as that important.”
Investors did not seem particularly concerned about this latest round in the trade war between the world’s two biggest economic superpowers. Stocks slipped in opened modestly lower Monday, and flip-flopped positive at stages in early trading.
Cramer, host of CNBC’s “Mad Money,” said that sentiment could change if the president were to follow through on threatened China tariffs on another $267 billion.
On top of the expected $200 billion and $50 billion already in place, all Chinese imports would be affected. According to the Census Bureau, the U.S. imported more than $505 billion worth of goods from China last year.
In the meantime, though, price increases on goods as a result of the trade volleys have “not been impactful because the [U.S.] economy is too strong,” Cramer said.
“At the same time,” he added, “I think that the president’s tweet about how strong the economy is makes people feel better.”
Tariffs have put the U.S. in a very strong bargaining position, with Billions of Dollars, and Jobs, flowing into our Country – and yet cost increases have thus far been almost unnoticeable. If countries will not make fair deals with us, they will be “Tariffed”
— Reuters contributed to this report.