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Trade war

China trade slump casts broad shadow over economy

Trump expresses optimism toward deal with Beijing

Cars for export sit at a port in Lianyungang in Jiangsu Province, China. Both exports and imports declined year on year in December.    © Reuters

BEIJING -- For the first time in more than two years, China's exports and imports both fell year on year in December, according to data released Monday, reflecting the drop in trade with the U.S., as well as shrinking domestic consumption.

The weaker-than-expected showing, which Goldman Sachs called "well below consensus expectations," was best represented in the sluggish exports of cellphones, which plummeted 31%. The decline in trade is likely to cloud China's economy as a whole, which has been underpinned by firm exports since 2017.

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