'very strong signals' that China is ready for a trade deal

US President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping agreed to give negotiators 90 days to resolve their trade spat after they met in Buenos Aires at the G20 summit

The White House and Beijing have essentially reached an agreement to pause the trade war for 90 days while the two sides try to reach a formal trade deal.

China and the U.S. would push ahead with negotiations over 90 days and China would implement the specific issues it agreed with the United States "as soon as possible", the statement said.

"I am a Tariff Man", the president said Tuesday in one of a series of tweets about a new round of trade talks with China after the world's two largest economies imposed tit-for-tat tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of each other's goods after Trump struck first.

"Very strong signals being sent by China once they returned home from their long trip, including stops, from Argentina", he wrote.

Mr. Trump's 10 percent tariff on $200 billion of Chinese goods was set to increase to 25 percent on January 1.

China could be preparing to spring a global compact to drive tariffs to zero, and approach Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) members including Australia for access to the grouping, positioning Beijing as a champion for free trade.

China agreed to eliminate the retaliatory tariffs it had placed on USA soybeans, according to the White House, which also said Beijing had agreed to buy an unspecified but "very substantial" amount of agricultural and other products.

The U.S. had a $335.4 billion trade deficit with China in 2017.

When asked about structural changes the United States had made as a prerequisite to any trade deal, Mnuchin said he expected some things to be implemented "on a rolling basis" in phase two.

Among the conflicting assertions that White House officials made was over whether China had actually agreed to drop its 40% tariffs on US autos.

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The president repeated his threat after the markets closed, saying if China doesn't make a deal, "we will be charging major Tariffs against Chinese product being shipped into the United States".

"It doesn't seem like anything was actually agreed to at the dinner and White House officials are contorting themselves into pretzels to reconcile Trump's tweets (which seem if not completely fabricated then grossly exaggerated) with reality", JPMorgan Chase said in a trading note.

The president added: "When people or countries come in to raid the great wealth of our Nation, I want them to pay for the privilege of doing so".

"We don't yet have a specific agreement on that, but I will just tell you as an involved participant, we expect those tariffs to go to zero", Kudlow told Politicoreporter Megan Cassella about Trump's auto tariff claim.

Trump has long accused China of unfair trade practices that hurt Americans and the US economy.

But he added, "if that's real" - raising some doubt - it would close the USA trade deficit with China, and 'we have to have a negotiated agreement and have this on paper'.

The economic agreementTrump said he reached with Chinese leader Xi Jinping on Saturday showed signs of unravelling by Tuesday.

While Trump has long championed the tariffs, even referring to them as "the greatest", they are ultimately a tax on American consumers that raise the cost of goods. This fundamental misunderstanding of economics, combined with his reckless announcement of the detente that wasn't, scared investors and continues to undermine his administration's efforts at reaching a real trade deal with China. China's crude oil imports from the US had ground to a halt. General Motors, which not only exports some models to China but also imports the Chinese-made Envision SUV, fell 5 percent to $36.52 a share.

Team Trump said China would agree to purchase a not yet agreed upon, but very substantial, amount of farm, energy, industrial and other products from the US.

One Chinese official told Reuters officials were "waiting for the leaders to return" before publicizing details.

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