US trade war raises the specter of new Cold War | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


US trade war raises the specter of new Cold War

The year of the Golden Pig is around the corner, but no Eldorado is in sight for Xi Jinping’s China. According to Chinese astrology, the upcoming Lunar New Year, starting on February 5, traditionally brings wealth and economic prowess.

A sudden birth rate surge is usually observed during that rare zodiacal alignment in the world’s most populous nation, with parents eager to take advantage of this good omen, which promises a golden future for their newborn babies.

Yet, this time Chinese middle classes are fretting with anxiety ahead of 2019, amid growing economic uncertainty due to a slowing GDP growth, and an unprecedented trade war with the United States.

In 2018, US President Donald Trump took Beijing’s leadership by surprise, slapping massive tariffs on the world’s second-largest economy, which sent shockwaves through the Politburo.

Impact on the ground has been limited so far, but the psychological damage is done, with markets, investors and consumers questioning China’s ability to weather the storm.

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