The market needs competition to work. Everyone knows that—especially President Elect Donald Trump.
What he’s done in the last 2 months has been nothing short of genius.
Trump’s created a political and economic climate that strongly favors companies that invest in America, and create American jobs.
Essentially, he’s made it profitable to make America great again (or at least made offshoring risky).
Best of all: it hasn’t cost taxpayers a dime.
How did he do it?
Trump’s used twitter (yes, seriously) as a giant economic “carrot and stick”.
He praises companies that invest in America, and badmouths those that don’t—and threatens them with tariffs. It’s a big stick.
Ford said last week that it will expand in Michigan and U.S. instead of building a BILLION dollar plant in Mexico. Thank you Ford & Fiat C!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 9, 2017
Toyota Motor said will build a new plant in Baja, Mexico, to build Corolla cars for U.S. NO WAY! Build plant in U.S. or pay big border tax.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 5, 2017
This creates a competition: the companies that spend the most in America get the best publicity, and (presumably) profits; those that refuse to play suffer at the hands of the newly invigorated patriotic consumers.
Simple. Elegant. And, most importantly, practical.
And the strategy’s working.
Here are the top examples from this week.
My Job’s Bigger: Alibaba vs Amazon
Chinese online retailer Alibaba announced this week that it plans to create 1 million jobs in the US over the next 5 years.
Alibaba’s Executive Chairman Jack Ma, who met with Trump this week, says it can do this by helping America’s small businesses connect with Chinese consumers—the way it currently sets up Chinese businesses with American consumers.
After their meeting, Trump said:
Jack and I are going to do great things for small business.
Not to be outdone, America’s ecommerce giant, Amazon, said that it will create 100,000 new full time American jobs over the next 18 months.
The jobs will mainly be in Amazon’s new “fulfillment centers”, to be built in Texas, California, Florida, and New Jersey, and Washington State. They will range from software engineers to entry-level positions.
All will have full benefits, according to Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos.
Investment-Measuring At Detroit’s Auto Show
- Late last year, Ford set the tone by pledging to invest $700 million over 4 years to upgrade its Lincoln MKC plant in Louisville, Kentucky.More recently, it also promised another $700 million to upgrade its factory in Flat Rock, Michigan. All totaled, that’s $1.4 billion in new investment.
- In light of this, other major automakers stepped up at the Detroit Auto Show, including Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. They announced plans to invest $1 billion in US, modernizing 2 plants in the Midwest.They expect this will create 2,000 new jobs.Chrysler also says it may relocate a Ram track factory from Mexico to Michigan, although this decision is not yet final.
- German automaker Daimler AG, known for its Mercedes-Benz brand, said on Sunday that they planned to invest $1.3 billion in their Alabama SUV plant, according to CEO Dieter Zetsche.
- Toyota Motor Corp’s CEO Jim Lentz announced plans to invest $10 billion in the US over the next 5 years, and an additional $10 billion over the next 5 years—that’s $20 billion dollars in new investment.
- Honda announced it will be making its new hybrid vehicle in America, although hasn’t released financial details. Honda also plans to invest in its Georgia transmission plan.Again, no firm numbers.
Tip of the Iceberg
What Trump’s already accomplished (provided the companies follow through), has already defied expectations.
Remember, the list above is by no means exhaustive, it doesn’t even include the 10,000 jobs promised by industrial giant US Steel, the 50,000 from Softbank, the 1,800 from Lockheed Martin, or the 25,000 from IBM.
Once he is in a position of actual authority, with the power to create policy, we will likely see an end to the large-scale offshoring that has crippled America’s economy.