Tariff Effects on Small Businesses

Tariff Effects on Small Businesses

Throughout the country, businesses are feeling the impact of the recent rollout of tariffs on imported products, in both positive and negative ways.

Current Effects of the Tariffs

For companies like SolarWorld, in Oregon, and Whirlpool, in Ohio, the tariffs on imported solar panels and washing machines have allowed them to ramp up production on their products and hire hundreds of employees.

Similarly, the city of Clarksville, Tennessee has seen a positive impact from the tariffs, with construction on a planned LG factory now a year ahead of schedule. The factory is expected to bring 600 jobs to the city.

Unfortunately, for some, the tariffs are causing devastating effects. Newspapers like the Owosso Argus-Press and the Tampa Bay Times are seeing increased prices from the 22% tariff on imported newsprint from Canada and, as a result, layoffs have already started.

How to React as a Small Business

For many small businesses, the impact of the tariffs is still largely unknown. This article from Business News Daily suggests four areas to review as your supply chain adjusts to the new tariffs:

  • Profit margin
  • Pricing
  • Inventory levels
  • Communication

Says Lyneir Richardson, executive director of the Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers Business School, “When the elephants dance, everybody gets shaken up. In this instance [small businesses are often] dealing with the supply chain asking for higher costs that cannot be quickly passed onto customers. It means more time thinking about pricing, renegotiating and managing cash flow.”

We will continue to provide you with updates about the impact of these tariffs as more information becomes available.

We encourage you to read more about the tariff effects across the country in this article from NPR and learn how small businesses can react in this Business News Daily piece.