Top U.S. business group assails Trump's handling of trade dispute

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The admonishment, written in a letter to US authorities dated Friday, came as US President Donald Trump said Europe is "possibly as bad as China" on trade in one of his biggest provocations to his country's longtime transatlantic allies.

European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas said the USA investigation into the possibility of auto tariffs "lacks legitimacy, factual basis and violates worldwide trade rules", just like last month's US tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

It shows the depth of Chinese concern about a trade war with Washington, as Trump is set to impose tariffs on billions of dollars worth of Chinese imports on July 6.

EU countries approved a raft of tariffs on Thursday (14 June) targeting U.S. goods including whiskey and motorcycles in retaliation against painful duties imposed by President Donald Trump on European metals.

Pushing back on Trump, the Chamber based a state-by-state analysis on data from the U.S. Department of Commerce and government agencies in China, the EU, Mexico, and Canada.

In a 10-page submission to the United States Commerce Department sent last Friday, the European Union said tariffs on cars and auto parts were unjustifiable and did not make economic sense.

The EU has warned Washington that a threat to slap Europe with major auto tariffs could inflict serious damage to the USA economy and would prompt strong retaliation.

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The EU in its submission said that European companies make close to 2.9 million cars in the United States, supporting 120,000 jobs - or 420,000 if cars dealerships and vehicle parts retailers are included, according to Reuters.

"They send a Mercedes in, we can't send our cars in".

According to the organization, half of all US manufacturing jobs depend on exports, and 1 in 3 acres on USA farms produce crops for the global market. And while other major economies like the European Union and China are slightly higher, they pale in comparison to protectionism in South Asia, South America, and Africa.

ENERGY: Oil futures recovered from the previous day's downtick, after Trump claimed that Saudi Arabia could produce up to double of the 1 million barrels-a-day increase agreed by OPEC countries.

However, the White House later played down Mr Trump's tweet.

The potential new European Union measures would apply "across sectors of the U.S. economy", the letter stated. Trump's 25 percent tariff on steel will hurt all American manufacturing dependent on economical steel. "So he holds a press conference - the president is barely out of there on the plane to North Korea, and he starts insulting us, he starts talking about the insulting Canada", Kudlow said on CBS' "Face the Nation" in June.

Coming up today, the Reserve Bank is expected to keep official interest rates on hold for yet another month with the post-meeting statement to be carefully scrutinised. Westpac forecasts they will fall by 4.0 per cent in May.