How have tariffs impacted robotics?

TechCrunch | 1/26/2019 | Staff
lhumara (Posted by) Level 3
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In July, Tim Cook met Donald Trump in the Oval Office to deliver a simple message. “Our view on tariffs is that they show up as a tax on the consumer and end up resulting in lower economic growth,” the executive told the President. ”And sometimes can bring about significant risk of unintended consequences.”

Cook ultimately got his way, with Trump giving some of the company’s products a last minute tariff reprieve. Even so, when time came for the company’s latest earnings report, Cook placed much of the company’s relatively weak showing on two-way tariffs and the looming trade war they represent.

Impact - Tariffs - Ranging - Everything - Panels

The impact of tariffs has been been profoundly wide ranging, impacting everything from solar panels to soy beans. Harley Davidson famously projected costs in excess of $40 million last year. Yesterday, The New York Times noted tumbling sales and stock prices in the washing machine industry, thanks in part to tariffs starting at 20 percent on imported products.

Consumer electronics, which are so often the product of components from wide ranging sources, have been hit with an outsized impact.

Cost - Tariffs - Issue - Uncertainty - Tariffs

“The cost of the current tariffs remains an issue, and the uncertainty of potentially more tariffs combined with export controls is a real threat to our global leadership 5G, artificial intelligence and robotics,” CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro told TechCrunch. “The tech industry – responsible for 10 percent of U.S. GDP and more than 15 million American jobs – has already been dealt an enormous blow by tariffs this year. Our industry can’t continue to pay $1 billion dollars extra in tariffs every month — tariffs are taxes.”

Over the past several months, manufacturers have been faced with the choice of raising prices or absorbing costs — neither a particularly great option in a volatile economy. This has left Massachusetts-based iRobot, which has...
(Excerpt) Read more at: TechCrunch
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