BUSINESS/NAFTA/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Trump frequently talks about reviving the American auto industry, but his approach to trade policy may backfire on the country’s carmakers. Mr. Trump’s efforts to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, to impose tariffs on imported aluminum and steel and to reduce America’s trade deficit with China could limit the reach of companies that produce cars in the United States and depend on access to growing markets outside the country. On Friday [5-11-18], the chief executives of the biggest automakers plan to meet with the president at the White House. The gathering comes at a critical moment, as Trump administration officials race to finalize a Nafta rewrite in the next few weeks and prepare to meet again next week with Chinese leaders in hopes of forestalling a potential trade war. The auto industry is among the sectors most vulnerable to trade disruptions because its business model is increasingly global, in terms of both production and sales. One in five cars made in the United States is now exported, and one in four vehicles sold in America were produced in factories run by foreign-owned companies. General Motors sold nearly 1 million vehicles in China in the first quarter of the year — more than it sold in North America in the same period.”

-Jim Tankersley and Ana Swanson, “Trump’s Trade Moves Put U.S. Carmakers in a Jam at Home and Abroad,” The New York Times online, May 10, 2018