Made in China: The millennial-loved goods facing Trump’s trade war
Why it matters: Much of the focus on the 25% tax on Chinese imports — and subsequent retaliatory tariffs — was its burden on the U.S. manufacturing and agriculture industries, but products popular with younger generations like vaporizers, electric scooters, and smart home products are caught up in the crossfire, too.
What's happening: The U.S. Trade Representative claimed the list of Chinese imports will not be items "commonly purchased by American consumers," but it contains components critical to powering popular products.
Items affected in the first round of tariffs, which come into effect on Friday:
- Smart home devices.
- Smart thermostats, like those from Alphabet-owned Nest.
- Internet-connected LED lights from companies like Philips Hue.
- Disk drives.
- Navigation devices.
Items that are set to be affected by the second round of tariffs, which currently have no implementation date:
- E-cigarettes and vaporizers from companies like Juul, PAX Labs and Blu.
- Electric scooters and e-bikes like ones from Uber-owned Jump and Bird.
The big picture: "With each scooter already costing about $500 and e-bikes even more, a 25% tariff could put a significant dent in these companies’ already substantial capital costs," according to the Financial Times' Tim Bradshaw.
- Both Uber and Lyft have been laying the groundwork for the electric scooter business in San Francisco.