Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

A World Trade Organization panel ruled on Tuesday that the Trump administration's tariffs on over $500 billion worth of Chinese goods violate international rules, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: It may be a rhetorical victory for Beijing, which has denounced Trump's trade war, but the ruling will have no binding effect. President Trump has blocked all new appointments to the WTO's dispute-resolution court, rendering the international body effectively toothless.

What they're saying: “This panel report confirms what the Trump Administration has been saying for four years: The WTO is completely inadequate to stop China’s harmful technology practices,” U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a statement.

  • "Although the panel did not dispute the extensive evidence submitted by the United States of intellectual property theft by China, its decision shows that the WTO provides no remedy for such misconduct.
  • "The United States must be allowed to defend itself against unfair trade practices, and the Trump administration will not let China use the WTO to take advantage of American workers, businesses, farmers, and ranchers."

Go deeper: By blocking new appointments, Trump destroys WTO's top court

Go deeper

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Chinese government is threatening to detain foreign citizens unless their home governments do what Beijing demands. In some cases, China has already made good on those threats.

The big picture: This marks a potential evolution of China's "wolf warrior diplomacy" to outright rogue state behavior, putting it in the company of countries like North Korea and Iran, which have also engaged in hostage diplomacy.

Updated 19 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: McConnell urges White House not to strike stimulus deal before election — Republican senators defend Fauci as Trump escalates attacks.
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Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
1 hour ago - Economy & Business

CEO confidence skyrockets on expectations of layoffs and wage cuts

U.S. consumers remain uncertain about the economic environment but CEOs are feeling incredibly confident, the latest survey from the Conference Board shows.

Why it matters: Confidence among chief executives jumped 19 points from its last reading in July, rising above the 50-point threshold that reflects more positive than negative responses for the first time since 2018.

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