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Deere CEO fears Trump tariffs could spark wider trade retaliation: report

Sam Allen says trade partners could strike back at US farm exports

Tractor on farm
Tractor maker may have to switch the materials it uses

The chief executive of Deere & Co. (NYSE:DE) has expressed concern that recently imposed U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminium by the Trump administration could create a blowback effect not just on its own international sales but on US agricultural exports as well.

Speaking at an event in Argentina Wednesday, CEO Sam Allen said the tariffs could raise the price of steel by as much as 30%, which could prompt the world’s largest maker of farm equipment to switch materials, according to published reports.

READ: Deere’s first-quarter revenues jump as demand for its tractors returns

President Trump announced a 25% tariff on steel imports and a 10% tariff on aluminium last month.

Allen said that the resulting retaliation could affect not just his company’s sales but spark trade partners China, Mexico and Canada to impose trade tariffs on US agricultural imports.

"The near-term impact financially we don't like, but the more important one is the longer-term potential impact taking U.S. farmers out of the world market for corn and soybeans," Allen told Reuters.

Deere shares were down about 1% to US$156.35 in pre-market trading Thursday.

Quick facts: Deere & Company

Price: 261.95 USD

NYSE:DE
Market: NYSE
Market Cap: $82.09 billion
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