This Morning in Metals: Steel, Aluminum Tariffs Could Lead to NAFTA Departure

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This morning in metals news, Goldman Sachs’ chief economist said the if the U.S. imposes steel and aluminum tariffs, the decision could preceded an exit from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA); the president’s trade adviser said exceptions in the proposed new tariffs are unlikely and LME copper holds above its two-week low.

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Tariffs Could be Harbinger of NAFTA Exit

As the world reacted to President Trump’s announcement regarding impending steel and aluminum tariffs, many are also looking at how the development will impact the ongoing NAFTA renegotiation talks.

According to Goldman Sachs’ chief economist, Jan Hatzius, there is a “good chance” that Trump could eventually announce a withdrawal from NAFTA, according to a CNBC report.

Hatzius also said the administration’s tariff proposal “does not rely on any economic argument and instead imposes trade restrictions on national security grounds.”

Trading Partners Hope to be Spared From Tariffs

As countries like Canada and Australia, among others, continue to hold out hope that they will be spared from Trump’s announced tariffs on steel and aluminum, the president’s trade adviser said exceptions are unlikely.

Peter Navarro, the White House trade adviser, pushed back against the notion of case-by-case exceptions, saying “As soon as he starts exempting countries, he has to raise the tariff on everybody else,” according to a Washington Post report.

Copper Flattens Just Above 2-Week Low

After falling 0.4% in the previous trading session, LME copper held flat Monday, according to Reuters.

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The metal hit $6,895 per ton as of 07:19 GMT.

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