The Latest: Trump seeks tariffs, says 'trade wars are good'

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The Latest: Trump seeks tariffs, says 'trade wars are good'
President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with steel and aluminum executives in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Thursday, March 1, 2018, in Washington. From left, Roger Newport of AK Steel, John Ferriola of Nucor, Trump, Dave Burritt of U.S. Steel Corporation, and Tim Timkin of Timken Steel. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump and trade penalties on steel and aluminum imports (all times local): (all times local):

6:10 a.m.

President Donald Trump is arguing for steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, saying “trade wars are good.”

In a tweet Friday, Trump writes: “When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win.”

He argues that the U.S. is “down billion with a certain country and they get cute, don’t trade anymore-we win big. It’s easy!”

On Thursday, Trump said firm action was crucial to protect U.S. industry from unfair competition and to bolster national security. However, his announcement came only after an intense internal White House debate. It brought harsh criticism from some Republicans and roiled financial markets with concerns.

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5:30 a.m.

Ordering combative action on foreign trade, President Donald Trump has declared that the U.S. will impose steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, escalating tensions with China and other trading partners and raising the prospect of higher prices for American consumers and companies.

With “trade war” talk in the air, stocks closed sharply lower on Wall Street. China on Friday expressed “grave concern” about the U.S. stance.

Trump said firm action was crucial to protect U.S. industry from unfair competition and to bolster national security. His announcement brought harsh criticism from some Republicans and roiled financial markets with concerns about economic ramifications.