President Donald Trump is hoping to win his 2020 reelection campaign on the strength of the economy, but a key sector has slipped further into recession just one year away from the vote.
Business Insider reports that Institute of Supply Management’s manufacturing index, which is seen as the gold standard for the measurement of the manufacturing economy, fell to 48.1 in November, a dip from the 48.3 mark that it posted in October.
Any number below 50 in the ISM manufacturing index indicates that the manufacturing economy is in contraction. The number first dipped below 50 in September, which means that American manufacturing has been shrinking now for a full quarter.
Timothy R. Fiore, the chair of the ISM Manufacturing Business Survey Committee, says that Trump’s trade war with multiple countries has significantly hurt the manufacturing sector, with little end in sight.
“Global trade remains the most significant cross-industry issue,” he explains. “Overall, sentiment this month is neutral regarding near-term growth.”
And Ian Shepherdson, the chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, tells Business Insider that there’s little hope of a rebound as long as the president keeps slapping tariffs on foreign countries like he did with Brazil and Argentina on Monday.
“We doubt the gap will close anytime soon, absent a resolution to the trade war,” he says.