Barring a resolution before next week, President Donald Trump’s escalating trade war with China — and increased tariffs on aluminum can sheet — threatens to further impact U.S. beer companies’ bottom lines. On Friday, Trump announced via Twitter plans to increase tariffs on $550 billion of imported Chinese goods over the next two months in retaliation for China saying it would impose $75 billion in tariffs on goods imported from America beginning October 1. And aluminum can producers are bracing for the higher aluminum costs and passing them onto their customers.
A month after a bipartisan group of Congressional members called on the Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate potential irregularities in the aluminum market, Platts, the group responsible for helping set the price of the metal purchased by thousands of U.S. beer companies, has vowed to offer greater transparency into current price assessments. Platts, which is owned by Standard & Poor’s and bills itself as “the leading independent provider of information and benchmark prices for the commodities and energy markets,” last week announced that it would begin publishing alternative pricing for non-tariffed aluminum and domestically available scrap, starting August 1.