Trump Suggests Tariffs Could Be Placed on iPhones and Laptops Imported From China

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, U.S. President Donald Trump suggested he might implement a 10 percent tariff on iPhones and laptops imported from China.

Trump is set to meet with Chinese leader Xi Jinping later this week, and he said he is prepared to implement additional tariffs on products that are not currently subjected to tariffs should negotiations not go well.

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He said the tariffs could also be placed on iPhones and laptops imported from China. The administration has been worried about a consumer reaction should such items be subject to levies.

"Maybe. Maybe. Depends on what the rate is," the president said, referring to mobile phones and laptops. "I mean, I can make it 10%, and people could stand that very easily."

Starting in January, the U.S. is set to increase tariffs on $200 billion in imports from China to 25 percent from 10 percent, which Xi Jinping is hoping to delay with the upcoming meeting. According to Trump, it's "unlikely" he will hold off on implementing the upcoming increase.

Apple devices are currently exempt from tariffs, though there were worries that the Apple Watch and AirPods would be included in the most recently released tariff list. Trump ended up exempting a product category that includes the Apple Watch, AirPods, and other smart watches and fitness products.

Apple has previously sent letters to the Trump administration urging it not to apply tariffs that would affect Apple products, instead urging the government find "other, more effective" solutions. Apple said implementing the tariffs would lead to lower U.S. growth and competitiveness, along with higher prices for U.S. consumers.

Back in July, Apple CEO Tim Cook commented on the tariffs, saying that Apple was "optimistic" the issue would be sorted out, with the company ultimately hoping "calm heads prevail."

Apple's stock has dropped in after hours trading following Trump's remarks.

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Top Rated Comments

mozumder Avatar
73 months ago
Trump's steel tariffs is why GM just laid off everyone.

Congratulations Trump voters, you played yourself.

The US economy is a globalist one that seeks open borders and free trade. The quicker you understand that, the better off you will be in this country.

Apple is doing exactly that by designing products by brilliant engineers in Silicon Valley, while having them built by cheaper, lower educated people in China.

If a person in China can build something for cheaper than in America, LET THEM - that is economic efficiency. An efficient economy will always win over an corrupt, inefficient one. Americans should only do jobs that only Americans can do, like high-end services jobs. Our economy is based on massive higher-education - the best in the world. No other country has a university system like ours, and we should take advantage of that.

We don't want Americans to perform manual labor that oxen can do. We only want engineers and scientists and artist - people that can create value with their minds.

New York, Silicon Valley and Hollywood are good examples of the kind of economy the US should be going forward.

A good example of complete economic failure is Russia - their economy is entirely based on selling things they find on the ground. When was the last time anyone bought something designed/made in Russia?
Score: 192 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ramallite Avatar
73 months ago
Trump's steel tariffs is why GM just laid off everyone.

Congratulations Trump voters, you played yourself.
Exactly right. This guy knows nothing about (and is unwilling to be educated about) international trade and the economy. He'll just utter whatever mindless drivel enters his head during an interview and expect to be taken seriously, while real economists can only shake their heads or laugh out loud. In the meantime, it is not surprising that his voters will continue to buy into this rubbish, because I guess it is quite difficult to publicly embarrass yourself to admit that you've been conned. Bigly.
Score: 101 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dormammu Avatar
73 months ago
Trump's steel tariffs is why GM just laid off everyone.

Congratulations Trump voters, you played yourself.
Are they tired of winning yet?
Score: 86 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ericgtr12 Avatar
73 months ago
It's amazing to hear Republicans who used to blame Obama for not creating jobs fast enough now speaking so highly of laying American workers off, farmers losing their crops and the steel industry taking such a big hit... just so we can to stick it to China. The American worker Conservatives once valued has become a pawn in Trump's game and they're all going along.
Score: 79 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mw360 Avatar
73 months ago
Paying an extra 20% for your new phone is a great way to own the libs.
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AngerDanger Avatar
73 months ago
Whew, I was sort of worrying Apple's prices were getting too low…
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)