New York — The Trump administration’s trade dispute with Beijing could hit US retailers if tariffs are implemented and lead to higher prices or a shortage of merchandise. On Thursday, President Donald Trump said he was considering penalties on $100bn in Chinese goods, without specifying which goods he would target. That would be in addition to the proposed tariffs on $50bn of imports from China that Washington unveiled last week. Trump’s first round of $50bn in tariffs mostly targeted industrial goods and electronics. The proposed US tariffs could be little more than a negotiating tactic aimed at forcing China to tackle its intellectual property policies. But some retailers and apparel companies are sounding the alarm bells. The two biggest categories of US imports from China in 2017 were communications and computer equipment, totalling $137bn, according to US census data. Cellphones and computers were spared from the initial tariffs list. Apparel and footwear, both labour-intensive...

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