In the midst of a brewing, international trade war, businesses have been lining up in Washington, D.C. to ask President Trump for relief from a series of back-and-forth tariffs between the U.S. and its traditional economic partners.
One of those businesses includes JOANN Fabric & Craft Stores, which could see a 25 percent price increase as a result of the tariffs directly hitting their customers’ wallets.
“These tariffs are unintentionally placing a tax on goods that are made in America,” CEO Jill Soltau said during an interview with FOX Business’ Liz Claman on Tuesday. “These are products that our customer, every day, puts their heart and soul into to supplement their income.”
More than 20 percent of the Ohio-based company’s customers are small-business owners who use the fabrics to create new products and then sell them online at places like Etsy, Soltau said.
If JOANN’s prices go up because of tariffs -- two-thirds of their products are produced in China -- it could create an unseen, trickle-down effect for their customers’ businesses.
“We think of Susan in Oregon, who has just this wonderful business of making household and baby-cleaning products,” Soltau said. “She employs almost a dozen people, and with these tariffs, prices will rise, her prices will rise.”
Already, the White House has imposed a 25 percent tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods containing ‘industrially significant technologies” in an escalating conflict between the world’s two largest economies. The Trump administration is also weighing a second round of tariffs on $60 billion worth of Chinese imports that would go into effect this Thursday.
In response, China slapped tariffs worth $34 billion on 545 American goods, and on Friday, said it’s poised to impose another round on $60 billion worth of imports, including coffee, honey and industrial chemicals.