There’s new bad economic news out this week: U.S. manufacturing saw yet another contraction in September—the worst month in over a decade, in fact. And the Institute for Supply Management, which put out the index in question, is squarely blaming “global trade” issues for the loss. Translation: Donald J. Trump’s trade wars.
The Washington Post notes that the most “alarming” development is that manufacturing employment also dropped, “an indication that manufacturers are so worried they are laying off employees.” That tends to deflate other predictions of an imminent manufacturing turnaround; manufacturers themselves appear to be downsizing in preparation for more bleak months ahead.
This is, again, a predictable outcome of Trump’s tariff wars. Retaliation from trading partners slashes our own exports; the sectors of the market that are being retaliated against suffer and contract; people lose their jobs; the jackass who started it all as an “easy to win” way to prove his toughness looks around, confused and angry, for someone else to blame.