The Conversation: Trump tariffs: How the trade wars are affecting manufacturing jobs and pay

With the U.S.-China trade war intensifying, there is a lot of talk about whether tariffs save American jobs — as President Donald Trump claims — or destroy them.

On May 14, for example, Trump said his tariffs helped save the U.S. steel industry. Whether or not that’s true, many economists and industry organizations argue trade protectionism is actually hurting workers in a range of other areas, such as the solar power sector, civil aircraft and auto manufacturing.

So is the trade war making Americans better off or worse? Political economists like me have been exploring this question since Trump’s trade war began about a year ago.

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