Trump Failed To Revitalize The Steel Industry

Trump promised to revitalize the steel industry and bring back jobs. But nearly two years later, the industry is in decline and continues to shed jobs.

A recent study shows Trump’s broad, untargeted steel tariffs have cost the U.S. manufacturing industry 75,000 jobs.

PBS Newshour: “However, increased costs of inputs facing U.S. firms relative to foreign rivals due to the Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum likely have resulted in 75,000 fewer manufacturing jobs in firms where steel or aluminum are an input into production.”

The U.S. steel and aluminum industries employ fewer workers now than when Trump announced his tariffs. 

Bloomberg: “As for the workers, primary metals manufacturers did keep adding jobs for the rest of 2018. But they began shedding them last April and now employ fewer people than when the tariffs were announced.”

The steel industry continues to shed jobs. U.S. Steel just laid off around 200 workers and has plans to lay off as many as 1,500 more.

The Times: “U.S. Steel laid off even more workers Friday in its third round of blood-letting since just November… United Steelworkers Union District 7 President Mike Millsap said he heard around 200 non-union employees were laid off, but the company won’t say exactly how many people lost their jobs.”

Detroit News: “U.S. Steel Corp. plans to indefinitely idle part of its Great Lakes Works site in Ecorse and River Rouge, affecting as many as 1,500 workers, company officials announced Thursday.”

The steel industry continues to decline, and optimism has faded.

IndustryWeek: “U.S. Steel Corp. (IW500/85) shares plunged the most in more than a year after the company said it expects to report a wider loss than analysts were expecting, the third American steelmaker in three days to warn on their outlook… Steelmakers raised some prices earlier this quarter, but buyers have been slow to accept the increases, underscoring fading optimism more than a year after the introduction of U.S. tariffs meant to bolster the industry.”

Last month, Trump acknowledged his policies have failed to boost the steel industry.

New York Times: “President Trump has announced plans to broaden his tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum, saying the existing tariffs had not proved as effective as he had hoped in reviving American production.”