Jun 2, 2019

Trump's China trade war meets the retailpocalypse

Interior view of closed retail store in California on August 20, 2018. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Abercrombie & Fitch stock plunged 25% on Wednesday. JCPenney stock is trading at $0.80 per share, down from a high of $80 in early 2007. And Dressbarn is closing down entirely.

What to watch: Now comes the trade war. Hallmark doesn't expect to be able to exempt greeting cards from the next tranche of Chinese tariffs, according to an internal memo seen by Axios' Dan Primack.

  • Hallmark imports around $500 million worth of products from China each year, including plush toys and Christmas ornaments. That puts the potential tariff impact at more than $100 million, at least some of which the company expects to pass on to consumers.
  • "Hallmark and our suppliers cannot absorb the full impact of the increased cost," says the May 15 memo. "Despite all supply chain creativity, it will not solve the whole problem."

Why it matters: The trade war is already hurting retailers, if only in terms of the amount of time that company executives are being forced to spend on contingency planning. Worse is yet to come.

Go deeper: Trump's trade war sends retailers into a maelstrom

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FEC commissioner fact-checks Trump's voter fraud claims

Federal Election Commission Ellen Weintraub during a committee hearing in the Capitol in 2017. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Federal Election Commission commissioner Ellen Weintraub posted an extensive fact-checking thread to Twitter late Wednesday refuting claims by President Trump and some Republicans that mail-in voting can lead to fraud.

Why it matters: Weintraub weighed in after Trump threatened to take action against Twitter for fact-checking him on his earlier unsubstantiated posts claiming mail-in ballots in November's election would be fraudulent, and she directly addressed Twitter's fact-checkin of the president in her post.

China approves Hong Kong national security law

Hong Kong riot police round up a group of protesters during a demonstration on Wednesday. Photo: Willie Siau/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Chinese lawmakers approved a plan on Thursday for a sweeping national security law for Hong Kong that would criminalize sedition, foreign influence and secession in the Asian financial hub.

Why it matters: China bypassed Hong Kong's legislature and chief executive to introduce the law, prompting Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to announce Wednesday that the city is no longer autonomous from the Chinese mainland and does not warrant special treatment under U.S. law.

Go deeper (1 min. read)ArrowUpdated 36 mins ago - World

Minneapolis unrest as hundreds protest death of George Floyd

Protesters and police clash during demonstration on Wednesday over the death of George Floyd in custody outside the Third Police Precinct. Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

A man died in a Minneapolis shooting during a second night of clashes between police and protesters in the city over the death of George Floyd, an African American man who died in police custody, per AP.

The latest: Police said officers were responding to reports of a stabbing just before 9:30 p.m. and found a man lying in "grave condition on the sidewalk" with a gunshot wound, CBS Minnesota reports. On man is in custody over the incident.