Soybeans are getting whacked after Trump hits China with tariffs on $50 billion worth of goods

  • Soybean prices tumbled more than 2% Friday morning.

  • President Donald Trump announced the US will move forward with a 25% tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods.

  • The move stokes fears that China will hit back with tariffs on soybeans.

  • Watch Soybean prices here.

Soybeans slid Friday morning as the Trump administration hit the world's biggest importer of soy with tariffs on tens of billions of dollars worth of goods, a move Beijing has said it will push back on with its own taxes on major American agricultural goods.

Soybeans were down 2.38% to $9.04 a bushel at 8:45 a.m. ET. Futures for November delivery fell as much as 1.9% on the Chicago Board of Trade to the lowest level in nearly a year.

President Donald Trump said early Friday the US will go through with threats to impose a 25% tariff on $50 billion worth of Chinese goods. The list of targeted goods includes technology products, especially those that are part of Beijing's Made in China 2025 initiative.

Within the hour of the announcement, China said it will "immediately take measures of the same scale," according to Bloomberg. There isn't an official list of targeted goods out yet, but Beijing threatened earlier this year to impose a 25% tax on US soybeans.

Chinese officials have also warned that trade talks between the two countries, which have been going on since May, would be called off if the US moved forward with its tariff threats and that any economic achievements so far will "lose effect."

Prices of the legume have slid 12.7% since May 29 amid mounting trade tensions between the world's largest economies. For US soybean traders and farmers alike, any retaliatory response by China targeting the legume would come at a particularly challenging time.

“This down move comes at a time when US farmers have already made their decision on whether to plant corn or beans," said Matthew Garber, a team lead for HC Technologies in Chicago. "Additionally, South American beans will be more attractive and decrease the demand for US soybeans. Hopefully the two sides can come to terms and end this trade war."

And China isn't the only major importer the US soybean industry has to worry about. Reuters reported Thursday that Mexican officials are mulling imposing tariffs on $4 billion worth of US imports of corn and soybeans. That's after Trump hit the EU, Mexico, and Canada, with hefty levies on steel and aluminum imports.

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