Department store operators J.C. Penney and Macy’s Inc. actively resist the new tariff proposal by the US President Donald Trump, which intends to include apparels and footwear amongst the Chinese goods covered under the tariff proposal.
The companies have expressed their dissatisfaction towards the tariff recommendations due to their adverse impact on the purchasing power of the US middle class customers as it will hike up prices. They assert their inability to immediately shift sourcing from China for all the products mentioned in separate letters dated 17 June and posted online to the United States Trade Representative (USTP).
The retail sector cannot absorb the cost of extra tariffs and therefore will ultimately shift the burden to the consumer’s pocket, making it unfavourable for the US retail environment.
The list comprises 26 items varying from women’s pullovers to Christmas ornaments and lays emphasis on the discontentment amongst the US women. Furthermore, 13 items in the priority list are apparels for women and girls.
To this, J.C. Penney commented in its letter to USTR, “For goodness sake, a tax on Christmas ornaments? One wouldn’t think the Administration would seek to emulate the Grinch, who left little Cindy-Lou Who with walls devoid of ornaments and ‘nothing but hooks and some wire.”
Adding to this, Macy’s opposed the inclusion of 63 priority items, which included tariffs on all kinds of baby garments and said in the letter, “It is hard enough for new parents to make ends meet while changing diapers and surviving on a few hours of sleep. Is it really a good idea to impose new taxes on baby clothes?”
The United States Trade Representative (USTR) had, on Monday, initiated seven days of testimony from US retailers, manufacturers and other concerned businesses concerning Trump’s plan to target another US $ 300 billion worth of Chinese goods with tariffs.
The hearing procedure will close on 25 June and the tariff proposal will not be brought into action until after 2 July, when a seven-day final rebuttal comment period ends.