12 Things That Are About to Get Way More Expensive
As tariffs kick in, here are the items you can expect to carry increased price tags soon, and strategies to protect your wallet.
How do tariffs affect you?
A tariff, as defined by Investor’s Business Daily, is a tax on imports, the purpose of which is to protect domestic production and jobs. Tariffs are at the heart of trade tensions that have existed between the United States and China for more than a year. The countries have enacted tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of goods from each other, which has negatively affected the stock market and caused unease for retailers and shoppers.
The Financial Times reports that the United States placed a 25 percent tariff on $250 billion of Chinese goods, then added 15 percent on an additional $112 billion. President Trump threatened to slap 15 percent on yet another $156 billion if a deal is not made. At issue, says the New York Times, are theft of intellectual property and economic practices like subsidies that Trump has said gives China unfair trade advantages.
According to reporting by CNBC, the impact of these tariffs has not hit consumers in a big way…yet. But experts believe that consumers will undoubtedly see a rise in the cost of a host of goods. “The supply chain will try to absorb as much of the blow as they can, then they will move those costs forward to consumers,” David French, senior vice president of government relations at the National Retail Federation, told CNBC.
“If you’re concerned about tariffs leading to high Black Friday prices, the good news is that the shipping process doesn’t happen overnight,” writes Joseling Linder for DealNews. “It’s safe to assume that at least some suppliers anticipated the Trump tariffs, bringing in goods before they rolled out.” And, in fact, these are 25 amazing Amazon Black Friday deals that are sure to sell out this year.
Here’s a look at some items you can expect to have increased price tags as the trade war continues—and some strategies to get them at the best prices possible.
Marketwatch points out that the last round of tariffs, the 15 percent tariffs on $112 billion of Chinese goods, will cause price increases for school supplies including pens, pencils, crayons, and calendars. Buy these items sooner rather than later, as the products currently in stores shipped before the increase in tariffs, and prices likely won’t change until the start of the new school year. Plus, these genius swaps will help you save big on back-to-school shopping.
CBS News reports that heavy hitters in the footwear industry like Nike, Teva, Foot Locker, Johnston & Murphy, Rockport, and Under Armour sent a letter to President Trump warning of what they called “catastrophic” consequences of the new proposed tariffs. Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America foresee increases of $50 on athletic sneakers and $80 on specialty boots made for firefighters. To make your current kicks last longer, make sure you know this one-minute trick that turns worn-out sneakers into brand-new ones.
Walmart’s Chief Financial Officer, Brett Biggs, said in an interview with Bloomberg, “We will do everything we can to keep prices low, but increased tariffs lead to increased prices.” He added, “It’s very item- and category-specific.” Eric Tung, president of outerwear maker Fera, told CBS Moneywatch that the company’s parkas, which typically sell between $300 to $600, will now cost $20 more, and their ski pants will cost $10 extra. That said, do you really need that new item right now? Here’s how one woman stopped buying three things and saved $5,000.
“There are so many tech companies in the United States and around the world who outsource their manufacturing to China, and the tariff on these products is likely to cause consumers to not buy as impulsively,” says Nate Masterson, CEO of Maple Holistics. “Expect many TVs to cost around $50 more. What can you do about it? Wait on purchasing your electronics. Trade wars aren’t meant to last long—it’s meant to be more like a game of chicken. The key is to wait it out for either side to discuss a better alternative.” If your purchase can’t wait, check out these Best Buy shopping tips employees won’t tell you.
If you’re trying to eat healthy, the trade war might make that a little harder. “Imported fruit will cost 15 percent more across the board,” says Masterson. “By the time they reach the shelf, 30 percent of the price will be various duty taxes.” Don’t miss these 19 tricks frugal shoppers use to save big on groceries.
“Computers, even ours—Psychsoftpc, which are made in the USA—are going to get more expensive, especially after January when the 25 percent tariff takes effect,” says Tim Lynch, PhD, CEO of Psychsoftpc. “Parts pricing will go up, and this will have to be passed on to consumers. Additionally, we are seeing some shortages in parts like entry-level Intel CPUs as the industry adjusts to the new normal, so these particular parts will see an increase in cost over and above the tariffs due to supply and demand.” While you’ll generally want to buy a new computer when the time comes, you’re wasting your money if you buy these 14 things in brand-new condition.
As reported in Bloomberg, Apple warned that tariffs would raise prices of the Apple Watch, AirPods, accessories, chargers, adapters, and even equipment that the company uses to manufacture products in the United States. The L.A. Times offers this breakdown: “A $1,249 iPhone XS Max with 256 gigabytes of storage has $453 worth of parts, according to TechInsights. A 25 percent levy on that would be $113, raising the purchase price by about 9 percent.” To balance out these price increases, check out these 13 savvy shopping tricks you’ll wish you knew all along.
Major home appliances
“Washing machines and refrigerators are expected to be impacted by the proposed tariff on Chinese goods,” says Jill Caponera, a consumer savings expert at Promocodes.com. In a cost analysis conducted by the New York Times, a washing machine sold at Home Depot costs 20 percent more than it did in 2016. That’s just one reason you need to know the most reliable (and least reliable) home appliance brands.
“Products made with steel or aluminum, such as cars, will increase in price as a result of the 25 percent tariff on imported steel and 10 percent tariff on aluminum,” explains Caponera. “While not all cars are imported from China, General Motors imports the Buick Envision crossover and will likely be raising the sticker price on that model.” Don’t miss these 34 secret car-buying tips your dealer won’t tell you.
With the proposed increased tariffs on aluminum, consumers can also expect to see prices go up on canned goods such as beer, soda, and soup, which are mostly made with imported aluminum, says Caponera. “Consumers can still get a great deal on beer by buying in bulk at Costco and signing up for coupon books at both Costco and your local grocery store to stock up on canned goods as they go on sale,” she adds. Here are 15 other things you aren’t buying at Costco—but should.
“As the proposed tariff has targeted Chinese-made medical equipment such as X-ray tubes, CT scanners, and EKG machines, the cost of those goods will increase within the medical profession, and thus could lead to a potential increase in health care costs to Americans,” explains Caponera. “While we can’t predict when illnesses will occur, if you’re an individual who gets annual screenings done using specialized medical devices, it would be a smart idea to schedule those appointments before the end of this year in order to avoid potential added costs.” Speaking of medical costs, a blood test in this state will run you 25 times more than in other states.
One way that companies deal with economic difficulties brought on by the trade war is, unfortunately, to pass the pain down to consumers. About a year ago, Ralph F. Tschantz, the Vice President and General Manager of Fun Express, which sells and ships party goods, novelties, and holiday items, sent an email out to the company’s customer base, explaining: “Fun Express will be implementing a price increase, effective on all deliveries after December 1, 2018, to cover these increased tariffs and other cost increases we’ve experienced the past three years in raw materials, labor, and transportation on products imported from China.” To lessen the potential pain of these tariffs, make sure to use these 20 ways to save money you probably haven’t tried yet.