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Halloween’s horror - high tariff for holiday costumes

Marina Bogdanova
20.10.2019

President Donald Trump's trade war with Beijing threatens significant losses for Halloween companies. Retailers now have to make a difficult choice: raise the prices of goods or make less profit.

Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping began the tariff fight last April, when the U.S. increased duties on steel and aluminum imports by 25 percent. China then imposed its own punitive tariffs on goods made in the United States, and the American president taxed imports of Chinese goods of $50 billion. Now tariffs are inflated on almost all imported goods from China.

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"Almost every round of tariffs hits the Halloween industry," said Michelle Buggy, executive director of the Halloween and Costume Association, which represents 50 Halloween-producing companies. - But big retailers don't want to raise prices".

Some major stores, such as Target and Walmart, have told investors that they do not currently plan to raise prices for consumers and will work with suppliers to find products from countries outside China to avoid tariffs.

Halloween costume maker Rast Impost, whose customers include Walmart and Target, has pushed Chinese factories to accelerate production of the company's most popular suits before the latest tariff hike took effect in September.

According to the National Retail Federation, U.S. shoppers will spend $8.8 billion on Halloween this year, slightly less than last year's $9 billion. About 14 percent of consumers surveyed by the group said their concerns about the economy would affect their Halloween plans.

Small businesses such as Pet Krewe, a New Orleans-based animal costume company, said they expect low consumer spending this year.

All Pet Krewe costumes are made in China and shipped to the U.S. as a finished product.

The company is exploring the possibility of moving the company's production to Vietnam or India and is even considering the use of Amish labor.

“Cosmetic companies such as Cinema Secrets are also expecting higher prices for character kits and cosmetics for Halloween, said John Stein, director of Halloween brand, Woochie. About half of Woochie's Halloween products come from China”.

The company managed to avoid price increases this year, but next year is unpredictable.

#Halloween #Trump #Beijing #Chinese #Tariffs #Trade war

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