Apr 3, 2019

Trump signs trade memorandum going after counterfeit goods

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post/Getty Images

President Trump signed a trade memorandum as part of an effort to track and curb the sale of counterfeit goods on online marketplaces such as Amazon, Alibaba and eBay, reports CNBC.

Details: In the memorandum, Trump said the value of counterfeit product sales internationally could hit half a trillion dollars annually, reports Reuters. The departments of Homeland Security, Justice and Commerce have been instructed to put together a data report with sales of counterfeit goods online and how they are being monitored, per CNBC. They have 210 days to present the information, and the administration will then provide recommendations and legislation.

What they’re saying:

  • Trump’s trade adviser Peter Navarro said, in an op-ed with the Wall Street Journal, more than 40% of the goods investigated by the Government Accountability Office were found to be counterfeit.
  • An Amazon spokesperson told Axios that the company spent over $400 million in 2018 trying to fight counterfeit sales and fraud on the site and uses numerous tools such as Brand Registry and Transparency. Amazon said they welcome any support from law enforcement.
“Why are counterfeits ubiquitous in third-party online marketplaces? For one, because customs law has not kept up with the surge of e-commerce. Alibaba, Amazon and eBay face virtually no liability when they act as middlemen for counterfeiters.”
— Peter Navarro

Go deeper: Amazon's problem with fake goods

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Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know so far

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Milwaukee Molson Coors brewery complex on Wednesday, including the shooter, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at an evening press conference with local police.

What's happening: Police said "there is no active threat" just before 6 pm ET, but noted the scene remains active. Police chief Alfonso Morales told reporters that officers have "more than 20 buildings we have to secure" at the complex and they do not currently have all employees accounted for, as more than 1,000 were at the complex during the shooting.

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Live updates: CDC confirms possible community spread of coronavirus

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

U.S. clinicians have found the novel coronavirus in a person who did not recently return from a foreign country nor have contact with a confirmed case, the CDC said Tuesday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,700 people and infected over 81,000 others. By Wednesday morning, South Korea had the most cases outside China, with 1,261 infections. Europe's biggest outbreak is in Italy, where 374 cases have been confirmed.

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Trump assigns Pence to lead U.S. coronavirus response

Photo: ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump announced at a press briefing Wednesday evening that he'll be putting Vice President Mike Pence in charge of leading the administration's response to the coronavirus.

The big picture: In the wake of a market sell-off and warnings from health officials that there's a real threat of the coronavirus spreading in the U.S., Trump sought to reassure the nation and Wall Street that the U.S. is "ready" for whatever comes next.

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