Donald Trump announced on Monday that he will restore tariffs, effective immediately, on all steel and aluminum shipped into the United States from Brazil and Argentina. In a surprise move, Trump accused the two countries of devaluing their currencies and hurting US farmers. All the US stock markets fell on fears of rising trade tensions. “Brazil and Argentina have been presiding over a massive devaluation of their currencies. which is not good for our farmers,” Trump said in a tweet. The announcement came as a symbolic slap in the face for Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, who has positioned himself as Trump’s closest ally in the Americas. Bolsonaro told Brazil’s Rádio Itatiaia: “I’m going to call him so that he doesn’t penalize us … Our economy basically comes from commodities, it’s what we’ve got. I hope that he understands and that he doesn’t penalize us with this, and I’m almost certain he’ll listen to us.”
The struggling fashion chain Ted Baker (TED) has warned that it overestimated the value of its stock and appointed a law firm to carry out a comprehensive review. The retailer, which has a new finance director, estimates that the value of the inventory held on its balance sheet has been overstated by £20m to £25m, based on preliminary analysis. The error relates to previous years and will have no effect on its financial position this year. Ted Baker has called in the London law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to investigate further, and will also be appointing independent accountants. They will report to a subcommittee, chaired by its independent director Sharon Baylay.