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Harley-Davidson Predicts Trump’s Trade War Will Cost It Big Time

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Harley-Davidson Inc. cut its forecast for profit margin this year, adding to its predictions of damage done by President Donald Trump’s trade war.

Operating margin will drop to between 9 percent and 10 percent this year due to the expected impact of tariffs, the Milwaukee-based manufacturer said in a statement Tuesday. The company had been projecting a margin of as much as 10.5 percent.

Harley was caught in the crossfire of Trump’s trade war last month when it announced plans to shift some U.S. production overseas to sidestep higher tariffs imposed by the European Union. The president attacked the iconic American company, claiming it was using the levies as an excuse to send jobs overseas. Already, Harley had announced plans to close a factory in Missouri and build one in Thailand.

The EU tariffs, which came in retaliation to Trump’s steel and aluminum levies, will cost about $2,200 per motorcycle shipped to Harley’s second-biggest market, the company estimated in a June 25 filing. The manufacturer hasn’t specified which of its overseas plants will begin producing bikes for European riders.

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