Trump’s Trading Policies May Impact the Prices of iPhones

by Amanda Allen ‘17

Inevitably, with a new president comes economic changes. President Donald Trump vows to put a tax on imports from China, and American consumers could be impacted. Approximately $29 billion worth of goods were imported from China in one month, according to NPR, and one of the main electronic imports is the iPhone along with other Apple products.

During Trump’s election campaign, he foreshadowed the possibility of putting a 45-percent tariff on goods from China. This means that the government would then get 45 percent of the item’s cost in taxes. With this, experts are concerned about the increase in prices of electronics. Although a 45-percent tariff is unlikely, according to Business Insider analyst Michael Gapen, he believes that the Trump administration could settle with 15 percent. If such is the case, the price of iPhones, now at $749 for the 132 gigabytes, could increase anywhere from $50 to $100 during the Trump administration. Customers may now think twice before they purchase the newest iPhone.

Due to this possibility, Apple has explored the idea of making iPhones in the United States instead of overseas. One of Apple’s primary manufacturing partner, Foxconn, is looking for a way to create facilities in the United States for the production of iPhones. This is unlikely to happen, considering it would be very expensive to build these factories in the United States.

Bringing the production of iPhones to the United States would bring back factories. Trump supporters see this as an opportunity for more jobs, but realistically, this may have the opposite effect. These factories would have to be run by many foreign workers until enough U.S. workers are trained. iPhones are Apple’s big money-maker, which is why Apple is exploring many possibilities to help keep the success of their company rolling through Trump’s presidency.