US Manufacturing Begins to Crumble, Factory Output in Red Zone

Auto plants and steel mills are shutting down. Companies are announcing layoffs and furloughs. Factory output is in the red.

The year-end outlook is grim, whipping up fears that as the global economy slows, Trump’s trade wars with China and Europe — with tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of goods — could push the world’s largest economy over the edge and into recession.

Most worrisome for the president, as he prepares to fight for a second term next year, the picture is darkest in regions of the country that gave him his paper-thin margin of victory in 2016, despite losing the popular vote nationwide.

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