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U.S. and China 'getting close' to trade deal: White House economic adviser

Stock Markets Nov 14, 2019 08:45PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Director of the National Economic Council Larry Kudlow speaks to the media at the White House in Washington

By Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States and China are getting close to a trade agreement, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Thursday, citing what he called very constructive talks with Beijing about ending a 16-month trade war.

Kudlow said negotiators for the world's two largest economies were in close touch via telephone but he gave no further details on the timing of a possible deal.

"We're getting close," he told an event at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington. "The mood music is pretty good, and that has not always been so in these things."

The United States and China have been locked in successive waves of tit-for-tat tariffs that have roiled financial markets and threaten to drag growth in the global economy to its lowest rate since the 2007-2008 financial crisis.

Markets are anxiously awaiting an agreement to end uncertainty that has slowed business investment around the globe. An agreement had appeared likely in May, but those prospects were dashed after U.S. negotiators said China backed away from the text of a draft agreement.

Kudlow's comments could ease market concerns that flared again this week amid reports that the trade talks had hit a snag over how and when to reduce tariffs, and what level of agricultural purchases could be expected from China.

Markets also soured after U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he could impose substantial new tariffs on China if no deal was reached.

Kudlow told the audience he had just come from a meeting of the top Trump administration trade officials and was more optimistic.

"It's not done yet, but there has been very good progress and the talks have been very constructive," he told the event.

He also opened the door to the possibility that Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping would not need to meet in person to clinch a deal.

Trump had hoped to sign the "phase one" agreement with China on the sidelines of the Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Chile this month, but that possibility disappeared after Chile withdrew from hosting the event.

Kudlow said the White House had hoped to stick to that general timetable. He joked that his preference was for the deal to be signed in his office on the second floor of the White House.

"I don't like to travel," he quipped.

U.S. and China 'getting close' to trade deal: White House economic adviser
 

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Comments (15)
Joseph Accetturo
Joseph Accetturo Nov 15, 2019 5:21AM ET
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it's not in our interest to do a deal and there won't be any pressure until stocks crash and the economy begins to fail.
George Hotz
George Hotz Nov 15, 2019 1:33AM ET
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why you lie to people and artificially pump the market ?!?
Jack AAA
Jack_A Nov 14, 2019 11:38PM ET
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lie,lie,lie, why are there so many liars in WH?
kunal parekh
kunal parekh Nov 14, 2019 10:26PM ET
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lol
Oliver Rios
orios01 Nov 14, 2019 9:55PM ET
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so we're progressing from 90% to 91% complete?
George Hotz
George Hotz Nov 14, 2019 9:46PM ET
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Where is the Deal ? Where is the financial supervision ? Stop artificially pumping the market !
Al Vlaj
alvlaj Nov 14, 2019 9:42PM ET
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Even if they are close (again for the 100th time), Trump is too much of a dolt to close. Worst negotiator ever.
Dong Chang
Dong Chang Nov 14, 2019 9:26PM ET
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China Xi Jumping is in Brazil for BRICS summit right now. You think he will stop by Iowa to sign the phase 1? Brazil also has tons of soy beans.
Adamo Nals
Adamo Nals Nov 14, 2019 8:24PM ET
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This is beyond the most unhealthy market you’ll ever see in your life. It needs at least a 5 to 10% correction
Dee Mehta
DMFINANCE Nov 14, 2019 8:24PM ET
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30%
CrackHead Bob
CrackHead Bob Nov 14, 2019 8:24PM ET
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manjula patel
manjula patel Nov 14, 2019 8:24PM ET
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crack head I think 80 percent. and then it will be reasonable.
Adamo Nals
Adamo Nals Nov 14, 2019 8:23PM ET
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I’m telling everybody, any day the market will correct big-time. You can only cry Wolf so many times. It’s so overbought and irrational exuberance to the max it’s disgusting actually
 
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