From almost the very beginning of Trump's trade war, the White House has called on China to expand access to their financial markets. China should 'level the playing field,' they say.
They say that and yet Bloomberg reports that the White House is considering imposing limits on American investment in China's markets.
Trump administration officials are discussing ways to limit U.S. investors’ portfolio flows into China in a move that would have repercussions for billions of dollars in investment pegged to major indexes, according to people familiar with the internal deliberations, Bloomberg News reports.
The discussions are occurring as Washington and Beijing negotiate a potential truce in their trade war that’s rattled the world’s two biggest economies and investors for more than a year. They also come as China is removing limits on foreign investment in its financial markets. A U.S. crackdown on capital flows would therefore expose a new pressure point in the economic dispute and cause disruption well beyond the hundreds of billions in tariffs the two sides have levied against each other.
The White House is reportedly considering delisting Chinese companies from American stock exchanges and placing strict limits on the amount that pension funds can invest in Chinese-owned firms.
It remains to be seen what this could mean for upcoming trade talks, but it's probably not good. Trump is threatening to derail his own demands of China by cutting off access to their markets himself at a time when China has agreed to buy a limited amount of American agricultural goods. How long can the limited amount of cooperation we've seen in recent weeks last while Trump is threatening to burn the last remaining bridges?
This only reinforces the idea that Trump believes he should get everything and China should get nothing.