The unintended effect

Ah yes, making America great again.

Harley-Davidson, the American motorcycle manufacturer, said on Monday that it would shift some production of its iconic bikes overseas to avoid retaliatory tariffs imposed by the European Union in response to President Trump’s trade moves.

The decision, announced in a public filing, is the latest and most high-profile example of how Mr. Trump’s trade war is beginning to ripple through the United States economy as domestic companies begin struggling with a cascade of tariffs both here and abroad. While Mr. Trump says his trade policy is aimed at reviving domestic manufacturing, Harley-Davidson’s decision shows how the administration’s moves could have the unintended effect of reducing employment and economic growth in the United States.

Unintended, but certainly not unforeseeable; everyone told him that would happen.

Last week, the European Union hit back against Mr. Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs with penalties on $3.2 billion worth of American products, including bourbon, orange juice, playing cards and Harley-Davidsons. On Monday, the Wisconsin-based company said that European tariffs on its motorcycles had increased to 31 percent from 6 percent and estimated that would add about $2,200, on average, to every motorcycle exported from the United States to the bloc.

Rather than pass that cost along, the company said it would shift production to its overseas facilities to avoid the European Union tariffs.

And bang go the jobs of people who were making the motorcycles here.


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